Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Album Review: Taylor Kelly - Up Up and Away

Taylor Kelly
Up Up and Away
**** out of *****

Taylor Kelly's newest release is a dynamite mix of funky soul, experimental jazz and from the heart powerful singing, as Up Up and Away soars. Kelly and company have pulled it all together as the Philadelphia singer/songwriter deals with love, loss and confusion (as well as tacos) delivering the goods on each and every track. 

The opening title tune sets the tone with it's rich musicality, tender soul, killer vocals and a ripping guitar solo to end. Engineered, mixed and produced by Robby Webb the sound throughout is warm, but never retro, alive in the present day; Kelly announces her intentions with confidence off the bat and things continue from there. The personal "JWYTK" kicks up the funk and horns while "Taco Night" gets more lighthearted and a touch tipsy with hip hop help from Mic Stewart. There is some distorted bass from Matthew Keppler under the upbeat chimes, drumming and singing (with Queen Jo helping out) on "Love is Blind" while "Run Away" excitingly amps the experimental flute and synth around the ever present groove.

"Tell Me" develops a Latin flair with percussion from Arturo Stable while "Bad Dreams" is adventurous, sounding large and cinematic in scope with a closing jazz fusion inspired jam which could have gone on for even longer as the players were all locked in. The album is a testament to Kelly herself and closer "Fall In Love" is her torch song, allowing her steamy vocals to take center stage and rise gloriously skyward describing a tale of bad relationship decisions. 

These are well worn territories when it comes to lyrics in soul music and the only slight knock on the record is that the themes don't move too deep under the surface, but for a full length album to sound this solid, that is a small quibble as Up Up And Away should propel Taylor Kelly into the national spotlight.
Another great bandcamp find, support the artist, buy the album, stream it below or on bandcamp and peep some video:

Monday, October 14, 2019

Dylan Cover #397 Bruce Springsteen "Blowin' In The Wind" Live 1988

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a live cover by Bruce Springsteen playing "Blowin' In The Wind"

Thoughts on Original:
From the first time we tackled a cover of this song:
The classic Dylan song, if you asked 100 people to name you the first Bob Dylan song they thought of, or his best known song, I am guessing 95-99 of them would answer "Blowin' In The Wind".  It is an epic, vital song in the history of recorded music. The lyrics tell a stirring tale, the melody is enchanting, it is pretty spot on perfect, and when it originally came out if announced to the world the greatness that was/is/always will be Bob Dylan.


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
We will be focusing on Bruce Springsteen all month in our on Masters series. RtBE dig's the Jersey Devil and his bombastic style.

Thoughts on Cover:
A straight ahead acoustic picking cover from The Boss playing The Bard. We like Uncle Neil's dramatic take on this tune a few months back a bit more, but there is zero wrong with Bruce today AND you get a bonus cover...."It's bound to take your life..."

Friday, October 11, 2019

Full Show Friday: Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band 7/16/16 Rome, Italy

We search the murky back waters of youtube to find full concerts and post them to the site weekly, come back every seven days to help us celebrate Full Show Friday's. These shows are of varying quality and may not be here for long so enjoy them while you can...As always, please support the artist every which way, but especially by seeing them live (if they are still playing)...This week...Bruce Springsteen & The E-Street Band!

For October The Masters focuses on Bruce Springsteen

Here comes the Jersey Devil for our October Masters Series as The Boss has been wowing fans for decades now and his live shows are things of legends. All Full Show Friday's this month will be a testament to these and get ready because we have some doozy's lined up. 

Thanks to our resident Springsteen expert Tom Gallagher for curating this month's Friday concerts.

Today we go to a more modern show from 2016 in Rome proving Springsteen and crew are still delivering the grade A goods. Bruce was revisiting The River, playing it in it's entirety this tour and the massive crowd at the Circus Maximus ate it up. RtBE was lucky enough to catch this tour and review the Brooklyn show. It ended up being one  of the best concerts we saw all year.

Different fan videos with pretty solid sound. Enjoy:

This is a playlist so if you are having full show streaming issues you can access it here:

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Fats Domino Twelve Disk Box Set Coming Next Month

The legend Fats Domino will be getting a huge box set from Bear Family Records titled I've Been Around and it is a doozy.

Containing all of his recordings with Imperial records from 1948-62 and ABC-Paramount  from '63-'65 the 12 CD Box Set will be complete with outtakes demos live cuts and a host of never before heard tunes.

RtBE is a fan of the Fat Man (we will be writing more about him very soon) and this seems like an amazing release...but one that could boarder on obsessive or for completists only.

The same company has put out collections on Chuck Berry and Jerry Lee Lewis, which RtBE has yet to check out, but the same thought applies to those as well, has anyone bought those? If so we'd love to hear about it in the comments.

Any which way but loose, you can pre order here and to get in the mood here are some videos of Domino's tunes through the years.

Album Review: Thurston Moore - Spirit Counsel

Hey all, got a new review up @glidemag which you can read Right C'here!!!
It is of Thurston Moore's newest release the 3 CD box set Spirit Counsel.

RtBE are huge fans of Thurston's and his last album was our pick for record of the year back in 2017.  This is a different beast as it goes full on long experimental, but the first track will be easily linked to that record.

The other two songs are more out there and this is obviously not for everyone, but if you dig experimental guitar based music it is worth picking up. We seem to be the highest on it when it comes to MetaCritic, but we dig on this stuff a lot.

Support the artist, read the review, buy the box set and peep some video below:

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

The Masters: Bruce Springsteen - Top Five Studio Albums

RtBE loves listening to new music and prides itself on keeping tabs on up and coming artists but in 2019 we are also going to have a monthly spotlight on legendary artists who we really love. We are calling this series The Masters. It will focus on the best albums, live records, transcendent shows and other odd ways we appreciate the artists and their contribution to music, culture and our formation.
For October The Masters focuses on Bruce Springsteen

The next "new Dylan" Bruce Springsteen had high expectations and early in his career searched for his own sound which would be solidified in the mid 70's as Phil Spector  inspired grandiose rock and roll that goes for it every time.

An artist who recently pulled back the curtain on his craft, Springsteen famously said he never worked a day in his life but yet can craft a song like "The River" or "Factory" which cuts to the heart of a working man. Poetic, bombastic, country tinged and inspired by that sweet soul music, Bruce's sound is his own yet he inspired tons of others. It is impossible for RtBE to listen to Thin Lizzy and not hear Springsteen B-sides and for that matter half of E-Street went over the top with Bat Out of Hell.

The Boss remains an artist striving for the sound, his newest record went all retro-pop country, he is willing to experiment and take chances and his best successes rank up there with the greatest in rock and roll history. He became meticulous in the studio and it shows on the five albums we selected below so let's not waste any more words.

As a reminder these lists are to start conversations not end them, with that in mind let's see all that heaven will allow...

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Album Review: Jesse Malin - Sunset Kids

Jesse Malin
Sunset Kids
***and1/2 out of *****

The newest solo record from Jesse Malin is perfectly titled as the NYC artist spins world weary tales about faded youth on Sunset Kids which proves to be his strongest overall effortStarting in the glam punk D-Generation, Malin still has the streets running through his veins but he now sings softer sounding but still harrowing tales of a veteran who still gets in love tussles while wearing his influences and heartache on his sleeve.

Opener "Meet Me At The End of The World Again" (which just might be 24th Street in Manhattan) layers keyboard guitars and tambourines in a welcoming Lou Reed vibe as the excellent production from Lucinda Williams and Tom Overby stands out immediately. Williams leaves the boards to help with backing vocals on the alt-country influenced "Room 13" but the song is notable for Malin's best singing on the record.

The down and out have a musical compatriot in Malin who addresses the dearly departed on the piano lead "Shane", the acoustic picking of the dramatic "Revelations" and the rich warm ballad "Promises" speak to what might have been and memories. "When You Were Dead" is the focal point of the record as it sums things up lyrically:

When you’re young and you run and you’re burning like a star
And it’s fun and it’s done and it leaves you with a scar
Wake up it’s another year and oh, the lock and chain
Wake up and there’s nobody near but oh, the pouring rain

Wake up don’t waste your life on things that don’t get better
There are only two rockers, the dragging "Dead On", the radio friendly shake of "Strangers and Thieves" (complete with background vocals from Billie Joe Armstrong) which comes off a touch too clean and when Malin goes for a mid 80's almost War On Drugs influenced sound on "Shining Down" things aren't as successful. Malin does nail it with the stripped down upbeat strum of "Chemical Heart" which deals with a tough luck lover in poetic terms. 

Mentions to fellow lifers in rock like David Bowie and Sid Vicious/Creedance Clearwater Revival in the pretty jangle of "Gray Skies Look So Blue" pinpoint Malin's true love of the rock life and while songs here branch away from that (the soul on "Do You Want To Know?", country junkie of "Friends of Florida") broadening his scope helps Malin deliver his most affecting record yet with Sunset Kids.
Support the artist, buy the album, stream it on bandcamp or below and peep some video: