Monday, June 26, 2017

Dylan Cover #281 Georgia Whiting - "My Back Pages"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a cover by Georgia Whiting of "My Back Pages"
Thoughts on Dylan Original:
From the first time we tackled a cover of this song:
The original has taken upon itself a cultural importance, and the chorus has simply become iconic. I doubt Dylan intended such, but it toes the line of out and out protest and illustrative questions. He puts down everyone from evangelists to girls, but the language snakes and flows so magically that it doesn't seem as harsh as "Positively 4th St" or "Ballad in Plain D". The sense of exhaling desperation or at least the realization that age confuses things even more seems to be what I take from this tune after each listen, but things can change...or can they?

Cover
:


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
We do not know Ms. Whiting. We found a short bio of her from ourstage.com:
I'm of Italian Scottish American heritage and was born and raised in Geneva, Switzerland, where I attended the Conservatory Of Music. I'm presently working on new video of "Summertime" from my CD for Youtube, rehearsing with my band, and looking forward to performing live very soon. Check out my video of "My Back Pages" on youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nErRGYzMOzA My website is: www.georgiawhiting.com and hear my CD "LIBERTY" (2011) at: www.rearwindowmusic.com.
Thoughts on Cover:
It is a straight ahead version of the song with pop influences and a pretty vocal. Not much different and not much to critique but a fine take. 

Friday, June 23, 2017

Full Show Friday: H.I.M @ Rockaplast 2000

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...H.I.M!

Random months RtBE decides to go back and showcase random years, like 1979, so this June we are focusing on live shows from the year 2000. Enjoy!

Here is an artist who we know little about except that back in the day we noticed he had an amazing logo:
They were on one of the first Vodoo Fests we ever went to in NOLA, but somehow we missed/skipped them. Turns out the are one of the highest grossing Finnish bands of all-time mixing goth, metal, arena rock to chart topping heights.

While we never ran across any of their songs before their cover of "Wicked Game" sure is fun. The singer actually reminds us of a RtBE Personal Favorite Dax Riggs a bit, but we will stick with Dax morose swamp blues sound over the arena goth.

Pro Shot, Pro Sound from Rockaplast 2000, setlist is below the video, Enjoy!

Bury Me Deep Inside Your Heart 4:20 Wicked Game 10:30 Razorblade Kiss 14:45 Your Sweet 666 18:35 Gone With The Sin 23:15 Our Diabolikal Rapture 28:31 Resurrection 32:20 Right Here In My Arms 37:01 Poison Girl 41:00 When Love & Death Embrace 47:40 Join Me In Death

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Drive-By Truckers Announce More Tour Dates

Just yesterday we reviewed Jason Isbell's new album and today we have news from his old band and a band he has recently toured with. The Drive-By Truckers and Strand of Oaks are hitting the road together for a tour this fall.
You can grab tickets here and see all of the dates, for the tour that continues throughout the summer and fall. We caught them at Webster Hall a few months ago and they love to rock loud. They are playing Jersey City and Port Chester for local shows in the NYC area.

Here is some live video to set the mood.




Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Album Review: Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit - The Nashville Sound

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit
The Nashville Sound
***and1/2 out of *****
Jason Isbell's last two albums are the strongest Americana/Sing-Songwriter releases to come out this millennium, so he has created some high expectations for himself. Now he begins opening up his sound (pop, rock, country) even posing with his longtime backing band and adding them as contributing artists (the first time since 2011's Here We Rest). While promotional material have marketed it as a return to a more rock sound, in truth it is a transitional album that finds an artist looking for his next steps.

The disk starts with the best full effort showing off Isbell's strengths, wondering outsider lyrics about the distance between city/country, old/new etc. A powerful number in the vein of Isbell's best, "Last of My Kind" succeeds greatly with this wrong place, wrong time lyrics. Then the full 400 Unit lock in and cook fast with the rocking "Cumberland Gap" that is dominated by a great drum lead, before the bluegrass/Americana of "Tupelo" eases things back in the tempo department. "Tupelo" and later "Molotov" seem to be comfortable middle ground for Isbell and the band; bluegrass/Americana structures that can come rocking alive on stage.

Isbell is always dealing with addiction (it pops up in almost every lyric sheet here) but now he also inserts a new dynamic as he deals directly with, race relations and this is where his personal feelings seem to come to the forefront with the ominous "White Man's World" that also showcases a violin/electric guitar back and fourth. His powerful connection with wife Shires is on display during the excellent love duet "If We Were Vampires" a delicate number that splits the disk before the arena rock of "Anxiety".

This centerpiece song is where things feel odd to stagnant depending on perspective. It begins and ends shockingly with flashes of Pink Floyd mixed into the beginning and ending instrumental passages before falling into more basic rock lines. It deals with the complex title issue in a very repetitive, simplistic manner and for other artists it would be skipped (or perhaps even praised), but for someone who turns a phrase as well as Isbell, it feels more tossed off than it should. Perhaps nodding knowingly to The Wall, was intentionalhowever like that album this song goes on too long and seems to say less and less the longer it plays.

Overall the sound and production is top notch as the whole band rings gloriously while vocals soar. The strumming jangle of "Molotov", the acoustic delicacy of "Chaos And Clothes" and the slamming rock of "Hope The High Road" all sound pristine. Those last two in particular find honest holy moments with power and subtly that shine.

Southeastern was amazingly stark and personal as Isbell dealt with new found sobriety (among other things) majestically. Something More Than Free found him coming to grips with starting a family and his own familial past (among other things), yet both of these albums had standout tracks that had nothing to do with those topics ("Elephant"and "Speed Trap Town"). The Nashville Sound on the other hand is a solid offering where Isbell welcomes more people into his world and tries to deal with  just what the world is in 2017. It finds Isbell content, sounding great, just not up to the recent incredibly high standard he has recently set for himself.  
____________________________________________________________
Perhaps no one artist has truly blown RtBE away as Mr. Isbell over the last few years, this is a good record, just a notch below his last few. Support the artist, buy the album, peep some video:

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Album Review: Father John Misty- Pure Comedy

Father John Misty
Pure Comedy
***and1/2 out of *****
Josh Tillman took a bit of time to fully develop into Father John Misty his character/not-a-character who sings writes and performs with a mix of gut wrenching honesty and sly humor. His wildly introspective, yet cosmic I Love You, Honeybear successfully dove deep into his personal issues/relationship with humor and pain, now for his follow-up Pure Comedy, he focuses his vision externally, to mankind as a whole.

A modern day combo of Harry Nilsson and Randy Newman, Tillman uses piano driven grandiose ballads with gorgeously lush sounds to deliver his takes on modern society. The title track opener is his mission statement, he is critiquing today's world by going back to the dawn of human hunter/gathers to religious zealots to the end of the world. In the end he sums up "I hate to say it, but each other's all we got". This track sums up everything to follow and he will pick up it's themes as he progresses through the next twelve tracks, but the die has been cast.

Tillman has stated in interviews he doesn't like the distinction between himself and Father John Misty that the truth is somewhere in between. Honesty and performance swirling together working wonderfully and lyrically this album delivers in heaps, every possible topic seems to get an airing.

Never one to shy to away from long songs two tracks go on for a while. The almost ten minute "So I'm Growing Old On Magic Mountain" is a fantastical modern updating of Neil Young's "Sugar Mountain". "Leave LA" is a mid album twelve minute journey into the idea of music, the idea of escapism and prophet entertainment cycle in general. It is a long slog of a song that keeps the listener engaged by wondering just where Tillman goes next, it is also the most personal sounding track with direct connections to his career thus far. A shorter direct cut down to celebrity culture is "A Bigger Paper Bag" that strolls through drug addiction and the luridness of it all.

Musically things are slow, even to the point of dull. Production sounds amazing, but if it wasn't for the fantastic lyric sheet it would probably be hard for non-fans to make it all the way through Pure Comedy. This is a long album and not much variety pops up to augment the slow snares, pianos and stings. When changes do occur, things can become overwhelming such as on "Things It Would Have Been Helpful To Know Before The Revolution" where electronic bubbling drown out the song, "The Memo" also has odd digital sayings that are conflicting with the sound.

The sparse musicality also puts the focus directly on Tillman's voice and perhaps it is intentional (always hard to tell with Misty) but the vocals have a detached feel to them that keeps a lot of his messages aloof. Where as I Love You, Honeybear was excruciatingly personal (and was sung that way) here Tillman sounds like a detached observer of human kind as opposed to an active participant in the human race.

"Total Entertainment Forever" is the most fun musically as we get an uptempo stroll that has us constantly content no matter money or status while "Birdie" is a direct comparison between man's struggle verse animal nature. Then there is "When The God of Love Returns There'll Be Hell To Pay" which skips everything and speaks to God directly; few artists these days could pull off a stark track like this but Tillman does somehow. He doesn't do so positively though and his closing outlook on society is just as bleak as he wraps up the album with "In Twenty Years or So" which is about how much time he believes humanity has left.

In the end I Love You, Honeybear is a more affecting overall work as it examines the singer internally, and varies up the musical backing leaps and bounds more, however Pure Comedy is still a success. This isn't music to toss on and clean your apartment to, Tillman is diving into deep stuff even if he stands at arm (and vocal) length from it all.
_____________________________________________________________
A good album that can be tough to digest at times. Support the artist, buy the album (you can stream it on bandcamp as well) and peep some video:


Monday, June 19, 2017

Dylan Cover #280 L. Louden "Country Pie" Live

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 L. Louden of "Country Pie"

Thoughts on Dylan Original:
From the first time we tackled a cover of this tune:
Recorded for Nashville Skyline "Country Pie" is a tasty little treat that doesn't leave you too fat after consuming it. The free-wheeling sense that accompanies it is simply charming, almost a kid song that I could see parents singing to children it has a whimsical air that elevates it up above simple throw away tune.
Cover:


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
This is the first time we have found L.Louden, but that is semi-surprising because she has done a ton of Dylan covers, so she may pop back up with this series. She plays ukulele and harmonica on some song and also posts her tab so people can play along.  

Thoughts on Cover:
Love this cover and lots of her other covers. We got into Uke a few years ago and it is a fun instrument to play and for this cover it works perfectly.  

Friday, June 16, 2017

Full Show Friday: Tina Turner 2000 Live in Poland

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...Tina Turner!

Random months RtBE decides to go back and showcase random years, like 1979, so this June we are focusing on live shows from the year 2000. Enjoy!

The woman who taught Mick Jagger all he knows continues to throw it down in 2000. Let's be honest, this isn't her hey day or even her 80's comeback, but the fact that Tina Turner could still put on such a killer show in 2000 is something to be admired.

Pro Shot, Pro Sound (if a bit diluted) with set list and more info below the video, Enjoy!


Recorded live at Hippodrom, Sopot, Poland on August 15th 2000. Notice: 'No more time!' at the end of 'Nutbush City Limits'.

  0:00 I Want To Take You Higher 3:47 Absolutely Nothing's Changed 7:54 A Fool In Love 10:09 Acid Queen 11:39 River Deep, Mountain High 15:52 We Don't Need Another Hero 20:44 Better Be Good To Me 28:57 Private Dancer 36:57 Let's Stay Together 42:06 What's Love Got To Do With It 50:40 When The Heartache Is Over 55:28 Hot Legs 59:03 Help! 1:05:31 Whatever You Need 1:10:34 Sittin' On The Dock Of The Bay 1:12:15 Try A Little Tenderness 1:17:17 Steamy Windows 1:22:12 Addicted To Love 1:27:39 The Best 1:34:32 Band Introducion 1:39:30 Proud Mary 1:49:43 Nutbush City Limits _____ 

Joel Campbell - Piano/Backing Vocals Euge Groove - Saxophone/Percussion Ollie Marland - Keyboards/Backing Vocals Warren McRae - Bass Guitar Jack Bruno - Drums John Miles - Guitar/Vocals James Ralston - Guitar/Backing Vocals Claire Turton - Dancer/Backing Vocals Solange Geunier - Dancer/Backing Vocals Ivona Brnelic - Dancer/Backing Vocals Lisa Fisher - Backing Vocals/Dancer Stacey Campbell - Backing Vocals/Dancer