Friday, April 27, 2012

Programming Note - JAZZFEST!

I think Bobby Charles  always said it best
Down south in New Orleans,
The prettiest girls I've ever seen.
Sparkling eyes, lips so sweet,
we make love to the Rumba beat.
Ship's at anchor, my suitcase packed,
Got a one way ticket, ain't comin' back.
Life's a pleasure, and love's a dream,
Down south in New Orleans.

RTBE will be headed on down to Jazzfest!!!!!

We will have a famous Sazerwrap-up of the proceedings sometime in May, but until then keep the place clean will you...Follow along all the shows right here if you are not lucky enough to be down there. 

North Mississippi Live Review - 4-7-12 @ Brooklyn Bowl
Hey all,

Got a new review up on Glide.

Read it C'here!!!!

It is of the North Mississippi All-Stars live show from Saturday April 7th 2012 @ Brooklyn Bowl.

This was surprisingly my first time checking out the All-Stars and I went with a friend who was also a first timer.  However, I have loved the band from afar, and he had no idea who they were, well 2 songs in he was sold on the trip and became an instant fan.  I couldn't agree more, their live show is spectacular, the playing is fantastic.  If anything they give you too much of a good thing at a show, but really who can complain about that?!?!

The Brooklyn Bowl was not completely sold out and that makes catching a show there so much better, no mega lines for beers/bathrooms etc, just a excellent sounding room with chill people.  Will be returning there later this month for a few shows, it really is one of the better venues for live music in this city.

Here are a couple of live clips from the band to wet your whistle:


From 2005

and some Drum action from 3/31/12

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Dr. John Live Review @ BAM 4-7-12

 Dr. John
@ Brooklyn Academy of Music

Dr.John has been artist in residency for the last month or so at the Brooklyn Academy of Music or BAM for short.  This set of shows are linked with the release of his newest album Locked Down and all of those songs would be on display here tonight.  Playing in front of a large 11 piece ensemble the New Orleans minstrel rolled out some excellent new material as he dug into grooves and let the night roll.  Exclaiming we are all about to "Pray on that right now!" off of "Revolution" which is a spacey call to arms that contains a funky baritone saxophone that bops along with grace and spirit.  Rhythm was everywhere on this night, and when the horns took a break extra drums and percussion instruments were brought fourth for them to bang around on.
The other big name on the stage was Black Keys guitarist Dan Auerbach as he has produced the new Dr John effort and has added some young spice into the 71 year old's playing.  On this night though Auerbach was simply a guitarist and mostly a rhythm one at that, rarely entering the spotlight or pulling off show stopping riff runs.  Instead he conducted things amongst the crowded stage and danced in his nude colored alligator boots while playing rhythm sticks.

The good doctor got in the dance mood during "Ice Age" shimmying and shaking his knees behind his piano. Everything on this night was cool, restrained and funky as the legend found some new songs to add to his growing repertoire.  "God's Been Good" had some Allman Brothers like riffs from Auerbach as the doctor worked some organ voodoo.  A show highlight though was when one of the older tunes "I Walk on Gilded Splinters" seeped out of the swampy sounds, an eerie delight that was a chance for all of the musicians to set the mood.        
The band left the stage for Dr. John to shine solo on his classic "Such A Night" that he immortalized on The Last Waltz.  An American musical legend he ended the night with his new song "Big Shot" in the manner of another musical legend Cab Calloway with a touch of scat singing and some call and response action.  It is a joy that Dr John still makes such engaging music this late in his career, and even skipping some classics ("Right Place, Wrong Time") didn't do a thing to the energy level or song writing talent presented on this night. 

We love Malcolm John "Mac" Rebennack, Jr and have been amazed at his style and singing for a while now. We even gave him some love over at the NYPL blogs last year before Jazzfest.  We are happy to be able to catch him again in just under a weeks time at the fairgrounds, and can, not, wait for that!  Needless to say this was a fun show, but it must be said if you were going there to watch Dan Auerbach (like a few of my friends) you were going to leave disappointed as he was not going to jump into the spotlight at all, not even playing guitar on all the songs. 

That said for a show that was 90% brand new songs the crowd seemed engaged if not wild and the players were clearly into the moment and the show.  Here is a song from the new album Locked Down (we will have a review of that up soon):


and how about some amazing Jazzfest 1973 footage to get you going as well:

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

NYCTaper Updated Schedule and Some Great Free Downloads

The fantastic NYCTaper have just posted a schedule of upcoming live shows they plan on taping and then offering for the masses.
The website does a bang up job of capturing live shows in the area and are a great source for catching those shows you just can't make for one reason or another.  For example we will be in New Orleans soaking up the sun and Jazzfest and have to miss one of our all time favorites J Mascis playing with Murph from Dinosaur Jr. and the famous Mike Watt at Le Poisson RougeTHAT show is going to be amazing, so we are pumped nytaper is on the ball. 

A few months ago we highlighted a band we never heard of that nyctaper had captured.  We instantly started digging those guys, on the flip side of that, here are 3 shows that we are in some stage of downloading or listening to of groups we have recently focused on here at RtBE
 We reviewed the Alabama Shakes newest release a few weeks back, but couldn't catch them when they played Bowery Ballroom, nyctaper did, you can hear it right here.
Last summer we caught The Black Angels at the Southstreet Seaport and they put on a tripped out show...NYCTaper caught them at this years SXSW debuting a few new can hear it and dl'ed it here.
And Lee Ranaldo gives a double dip for the nyctaper crew.  We reviewed the album a few weeks ago and love the new tunes, can't wait to check them live.

Support all these great artists and this fantastic website.  Keep up the great work nyctaper!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

New Jack White - Blunderbuss Streaming Free Now!

For those who want to check out the new Jack White album Blunderbuss, you can go over to Spinner and check it out, just click right here!

We are working on a full review, so stay tuned, but listen for yourself and get rocking.   You can peep two of the songs from the disk live off of a German TV show below and buy the disk here.

"Sixteen Saltines" & "Freedom at 21"

Monday, April 23, 2012

Dylan Cover #45 Kina Grannis "Boots of Spanish Leather"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a cover by Kina Grannis "Boots Of Spanish Leather"

Thoughts on Original:
From the first time we did someone covering this tune, here are my thoughts:
One of the first Dylan songs that really bowled me over.  I know on the "Times They Are a-Changin'" there are a ton of epic songs but this was the track that stayed with me the longest.  It is ghostly in it's presentation and still just as dynamic now as when he wrote it back in 1963.  My favorite show I have seen Dylan play live was back in 1999 at the RPI Fieldhouse.  The whole night was great, my favorite backing band of his since The Band, a tiny venue and a setlist that was magical.  One of the major highlights was "Boots of Spanish Leather", I need to break out that bootleg this week and re-live that great night. 


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
When this tune was picked this week I had no idea who Kina Grannis was, but after a quick Google search I found out that she was the Doritos Girl from a few Super Bowls back.  Can't say I knew anything else about her except that she won that contest so I do not  have much more to base opinions on, going in pretty fresh to this one. 

Thoughts on Cover:   

Kina's take on this classic Dylan tune is nice, simple and detracts nothing from the original.  It also doesn't add much, but at the end when she mentions her love for the lyrics and that fans should go listen to it, there was a moment I hadn't realized that (I am guesing here) a majority of her fans have not heard Dylan before, or this song.  Maybe that's not the case but opening up the artist to new fans is something we try to do every week and she has a much bigger reach, so good on you Kina for a straight ahead cover.

Grade: C+

Wilson's Take:

Janasie's Take:


Thursday, April 19, 2012

RIP Levon Helm

We already paid some respects here, but we just wanted to note the passing of an American Rock and Roll Legend.
Levon Helm Died today, he was 71.  Some obituaries here and here to read up on him, needless to say he inspired generations of (and will continue with his recordings) musicians to go for it, RtBE staff included.  We could (and maybe will in the future) write much more regarding him, but for now we will just post this, one of our favorite Levon moments, and raise a glass to a great musician and idol.

What a voice, what a player.  Levon, you will always live on.

Album Review: Halestorm The Strange Case Of...

Hey all,

Got a new review up over on Gotham Rocks

Give it a Read Right C'here!!!!

It is of the new Halestorm disk The Strange Case of...

This right here is a group that is looking to break into mass worldwide appeal with some blatant pop tracks surround by some hard rock. 

Front woman Lzzy Hale (see where he band name comes from now?) dominates everything and with reason as she is a very marketable frontwoman who has a legit voice.  Lyrically things seem middle of the road, with moderate gender switching and bitch acting as a provocative word, I guess, but the musicianship and craft is cool.  Brother Arejay seems to ham it up along with sis in the first video released for the track "Love Bites (And So Do I)" below.

Here is where you can get the album and check some videos below.

"Love Bites (And So Do I)" The hardest song on the disk-

"All I Wanna Do Is Make Love To You" Heart cover from the EP I mentioned in the review:

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Album Review: Galactic - Carnivale Electricos

Hey all,

Got a new review up over on Glide.

Read it Right C'here!!!!

It is of Galactic's newest release, Carnivale Electricos.

Jazzfest is right around the corner and RtBE is getting giddy, what better way to get juiced for the proceedings then to review one of the hardest working bands that city has to offer?  Galactic have killed it recently representing their hometown expertly on their last release and tour.  Carnivale Electricos continues that trend gloriously with an out and out party put down on wax. 

Once this train gets rolling there is no stopping it.  We can not wait to catch Galactic in their home town during the beginning of May, and our hometown as the month wraps up.  Should be exciting times, until then grab the album here and preview some tracks below:

"Hey Na Na"


"Move Fast"

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Levon Helm Health is Failing.

Just noticed this sad news on Facebook from Levon Helms official page
Dear Friends,
Levon is in the final stages of his battle with cancer. Please send your prayers and love to him as he makes his way through this part of his journey. ...

Thank you fans and music lovers who have made his life so filled with joy and celebration... he has loved nothing more than to play, to fill the room up with music, lay down the back beat, and make the people dance! He did it every time he took the stage...

We appreciate all the love and support and concern.
From his daughter Amy, and wife Sandy
RtBE have proclaimed our love of all things Band related in the past especially The Last Waltz and count ourselves extremely luck to have seen Levon play in recent years many times.  He was a a highlight last summer when he was in the city with Willie he stole the show and the first time we saw him play the Beacon a few St. Patrick's Day's back which was his first show out of his home in along time.  We were looking forward to seeing him, Larry and the whole Ramble playing in a few weeks at Jazzfest, this news saddens us, but he has lived a full life and that should be celebrated.  

Here is a video we took at the Radio City Ramble:
"The Shape I'm In"

Warren Haynes and his band will fill for Helm at Jazzfest, but nobody will ever take his place as a true Rock and Roll Legend.  
 Keep On Keepin' On Levon.  

Album Review: Herzog - Cartoon Violence

Hey all,

Got a new review up on Glide. 

Read it right C'here!!!!

It is from the band Herzog and it is called Cartoon Violence

This is a solid release from a band I was unaware of until last month.  An intriguing mix of Weezer, Surfer Blood, Built to Spill and others the band isn't super original, but they are sure as hell catchy. 

Things sound good on their end, and RtBE hope to catch the midwest band when they head east.

Some previews and live videos:

"You Clean Up Nice"

"Fuck This Year"

Monday, April 16, 2012

Dylan Cover #44 Jimi Hendrix "Drifters Escape"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a cover by Jimi Hendrix doing "Drifters Escape"

Thoughts on Original:
"Drifters Escape" is a fun small song on John Wesley Harding  coming after the long and rambling "Ballad of Frankie Lee & Judas Priest" and the toss off "Dear Landlord".  It falls somewhere between those two and is probably a better song then both because of that, it has mystery, powerful lyrics and a strong performance.  It must mean a lot to Bob since he choose to never play it live until a few days after the Rodney King verdict in Oregon on 4-30-1992.  Trials and verdicts not the best at doing what they both should... 


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
Umm....He's Jimi Hendrix.  He is the best Electric Guitar player in Rock and Roll History...Those are my thoughts.  On a personal note he is the gateway artist who broke me through to really great music out there, maturing me as a fan.

Thoughts on Cover:
We never got a around to Hendrix's most famous cover of Dylan in our Best of (maybe he will make the cut this year) but "Drifters Escape" has a hard big brother to follow when it comes to these two hooking up on tunes.  There may have never been a better combo and Hendrix death hurts as the two could have continued the covers or even better Hendrix would have probably toured with Dylan at some point...which would have been super interesting...anyway..

This version is dynamite and wasn't even made for public consumption.  Given more time, a studio to toil around in and a few vocal re-do's this could have become an all-time classic.  As it stands today it is still a damn fine version:

Grade A-

Wilson's Take:
Bob Dylan still believes that Jimi Hendrix's cover of "All Along the Watchtower" trumped the original. Yet this cover of "Drifter's Escape" sounds so much like a stab at Hendrix's "Watchtower" that - way up here in the future - I'm inclined to believe that some Mac-equipped teenager mashed up Hendrix's voice to posthumously manufacture it. 

This wasn't meant for release, so any critique must be limited...but like all great talents, Hendrix either owns his form or entirely dispossess it. On "Drifter's Escape", Hendrix's guitar crashes upon the track while his voice runs off in another direction...apart, they are two forces of nature, together, on this track, they never catch up with each other and it leaves the end-product stilted...and we're left to wonder what could have been with a sober sound engineer and few more takes.

Janasie's Take:
I believe I have talked about John Wesley Harding here before, so I am going to get straight to the cover.  There aren't many artists who compete with Bob Dylan for my highest affections, but my admiration for Jimi may even exceed my regard for Bobby D.  I learned to love music listening to my parents' LPs, primarily releases from these two artists.  As a result, it is impossible for me to be objective here.  Hendrix was the complete package - he had the song crafting ability of a Dylan or a Simon and he was a transcendent instrumentalist.  He was a true, hardcore fan of Dylan's music and you can see the lyrical influence in several of his songs.  

His version of "Drifter's Escape" is like a lot of his unfinished studio work, unpolished, but still a diamond all the same.  In addition to "All Along the Watchtower", I'd love to see his spectacular version of "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window?" featured here some time in the future.  Get your hands on as much Jimi Hendrix as you can.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Jack White: Rain King

Josh Eells has put together a cool article on RtBE boy crush Jack White and it is pretty boosh.  You should take some time and read it here from the NY Times Magazine.  While we would like it to focus a bit more on the music then his personal life, we recognize our nerd level interest and anything that highlights Jackie boy is A-OK.  
There are some really great quotes, our favorite being:

 "Kids today never say, ‘Man, I’m really into remote-controlled steamboats.’ They never say that.”

His relationship with Bob Dylan gets a bit of type space and the fact that Bob is a welder and taught White pretty much blew my mind.  No mention of our favorite Raconteurs, but we will live.  The idea that two bands are supporting him and neither one knows which one is playing any given night is pretty odd and a bit excessive, but we need to catch him an action before we pass final judgement. 
"Love Interruption"

"Sixteen Saltines"

Hey Jack, Eddie Vedder bailed on Jazzfest, think you could cover?  Bring any kinda band you want to.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Album Review: Delta Spirit Delta Spirit

Delta Spirit
Delta Spirit
***and1/2 out of *****

On Ode to Sunshine Delta Spirit debuted with an instantly catchy release that was loaded with rhythm, awash in cymbals, joining the hippy-indie revival that was in full swing circa '08 (see Dr. Dog, White Rabbits, Cold War Kids etc.).  Then the band released a clunker of a album with History From Below that seemed to find lead singer Matthew Vasquez struggling on the lyrical front.  This self-titled release happily harkens back to what this band does best; pulsating style indie rock complete with complex beats, guitar lines and effecting vocals.   

Matt Vazquez has always presented soothing pipes or a yelp that inspires, but here it is his lyrical voice that returns stronger.  Maybe moving to Brooklyn from Southern California has inspired the singer, whatever the cause things are grown on this effort with tracks like "Host" sounding self assured.  Noticeably the music has been accentuated around him, creating more of band vibe, then front-man/musical supporters like on the last record and this benefits everyone.  There are still moments the lyrics aren't spot on but funkiness simply overtakes them with the party rocking "Tear It Up" or chaotic "Tellin' The Mind" both containing enough musical nuances to bounce your mind along with your hips.  On "California" and the disk closing "Yamaha" the heartfelt issues shine through elevating some of the weaker lines showing maturity from Vazquez.

There are many here though: "Empty House", "Otherside", "Idaho", "Into The Darkness", "Timebomb" and disk highlight "Money Saves" which prove the band has a ton to offer.  All of these coalesce the strengths of the 5 piece finding the shaggy minstrels in top gear going forward.  Delta Spirit has a knack for emanating rays of sunshine with their playing and by going back to their basics they produce another winning number while giving glimpses of a band evolving in a positive direction.  It is always intriguing when a band self-titles an album, maybe this is the Delta Spirit they always thought they were, a new beginning for the group.   
RtBE has been on this band's tail since they started out, catching them in small clubs and reviewing their first two albums.  I mentioned here that I was really frustrated by their last release, that is far from the case with this album.  Good to see they are back doing things really well, here's hoping RtBE can catch them live.  You should do the same, live dates here, grab the album here and peep some video previews below. 

"Money Saves"


"Empty House"

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Album Review: Alabama Shakes Boys & Girls

 Hey all-

Got another review up on Glide.

Read it Right C'here!!!!

It is of the Alabama Shakes newest release Boys & Girls

It can be difficult reviewing an album on a release have limited time, only get a few listens and need to spill out thoughts that anyone can go back to years from now and check out...sometimes first impressions are not always the right ones for a variety of reasons.  That is the case with this disk.

Upon first listen I found it simple, straight ahead and really boring.  When it came to review time, I went back and listened to it, again...and again...and again and the album continued to grow, expand and really impress.

Musically things are in the roots rock vein with blues/soul/rock as the base, but the vocals are what's getting this group noticed.  The first person vocally who I felt Brittany Howard sounded like is...of all people, Caleb Followill from the Kings of Leon, especially on the rock numbers.  I actually wrote that in the original review, but Editors over at Glide took it out...not sure why.  Not a put down to Howard, it was just the first voice I was reminded of not seeing her, just listening.

On the blues/soul songs there is more dynamic range to her vocals and depth shines through on tracks like "You Ain't Alone" and "Heartbreaker"

Anyway enough are some video previews, try to catch them live and you can grab the album here.  

"You Ain't Alone" Live

"Rise To The Sun" Live

"On Your Way"

Monday, April 9, 2012

Dylan Cover #43 Esteban Paez "Maybe Someday"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a cover by Esteban Paez doing "Maybe Someday"

Thoughts on Dylan Original:
Not to be confused with the excellent "Someday Baby" from the recent Modern Times  today we have "Maybe Someday" from Knocked out Loaded, one of the weakest releases of Dylan's career.  What makes the Bard endlessly fascinating is that you can usually find a gold nugget mixed in with the slag, I have a friend who swears by "Brownsville Girl" on this disk, safe to say "Maybe Someday" is not that winning gem.  Dylan may have never sounded more cheesy 80's here with razor thin production, back up singers and a Casio keyboard sounding horn section.  His singing is actually pretty powerful, but over the weak ass production it is forgettable, it would be interesting however to hear he, himself re-do this one with his current band...hmm 


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
I had not heard of Esteban Paez, but after checking out a google search, I believe that this is a collection of his tunes.  It looks like he is an Argentinian singer and a fairly decent one at that.  Not speaking the language though I am not sure much more about him, and had no knowledge of him pre-hearing this cover.

Thoughts on Cover:
Well it took us 43 shots but we finally came up with a bilingual cover of Dylan's work.  I find it fascinating to translate his songs into other languages and really wish I could speak one to hear how it works switching things up.  Are the turn of phrases the same?  Do the little jokes work?  This tune doesn't have too much too it lyrically, so it is a good one for an ignorant American to tackle.  Musically the slide guitar is really great and at the forefront of the tune, spicing things up.  The crash cymbals are a decent touch, if a bit theatric, while the strumming acoustic keeps it organic.  

The language barrier isn't much of a hindrance for enjoyment and Paez has done a nice job singing and playing on this one, without too much to work with from the original...

Grade C+

Wilson's Take:
Have you ever woken up outside, under the blazing sun, with no idea where you are? You're covered in sweat, glitter, mascara, and what appears to be (someone else's) dried blood? Well, evidently so has Esteban Paez. That's exactly what this cover of "Maybe Someday" sounds like - a night in Mexico gone awry in all the right ways.

"Maybe Someday" is a great tune because in many ways it's an upside-down version of "Idiot Wind" - Dylan's epic send-off. On "Maybe Someday" , it's almost as if Dylan was reaching for "Idiot Wind" but couldn't find the pulse...thus, instead of apocalyptic bitterness, he gives his woman a parting clank of the beer glass, rife with several overlooked lyrical gems, the best being: "Always was a sucker for the right cross; never wanted to go home ’til the last cent was lost."

Esteban Paez's cover invites a smile. It sounds - in Spanish - exactly as the words were originally intended...which is a testament to the spiritual depth of the romance languages. Above all, with the volume cranked, Paez's cover of "Maybe Someday" hits you like a memory not yet had. One that's coming on down the road, "Maybe Someday."

Janasie's Take:
I have never listened to the Knocked Out Loaded album, which is unusual for me when it comes to Dylan.  I know a few of the songs off of it, "Maybe Someday" included, either through other releases or live shows.  The album contains one of my favorite "bad" songs ever - "Brownsville Girl".  Eleven minutes of rambling melodrama that I just can't get enough of.  "Maybe Someday" is a bit of a rambler itself, though it fits a little more easily into the traditional, pop song format.  Dylan has a lot of tunes like this one in his repertoire, where he finds a fairly simple song structure and works off the cuff for awhile, kinda prattling on, kinda not, usually about scorned love.  Not what I consider "high" Dylan, but enjoyable nonetheless.

I like this cover.  The phrasing is very Dylan-like, so much so that you don't necessarily pick up on the language switch at first.  The guitar work is pretty tasty as well.  I'd put my stamp of approval on it, allowing that I don't have a great connection to the original to begin with.  Fun stuff.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Happy Opening Day!!!

RtBE doesn't subscribe to fake opening days, today actually is the real deal in our book, so like last year, let's celebrate with a quote from the patron saint of this blog:
I see great things in baseball.  It's our game - the American game.  It will take our people out-of-doors, fill them with oxygen, give them a larger physical stoicism.  Tend to relieve us from being a nervous, dyspeptic set.  Repair these losses, and be a blessing to us.  ~Walt Whitman

Today we get a fun Verlander vs. Lester Matchup in the early shift as well as my favorite Mets beginning their quest for greatness against the hated Braves.  Sure everyone is predicting the Queens Team to have a shatty year, but we are currently in first place...and anything can happen.  That is the beautiful thing about opening day...everybody's got a chance.

I will be spending this holiday with some good friends taking in all of the action, you should be too..after all this is America...this is Baseball...this is Opening Day!

Say Hey, It's Opening Day!!!  Let's Get It Started!

People ask me what I do in winter when there's no baseball.  I'll tell you what I do.  I stare out the window and wait for spring.  ~Rogers Hornsby

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Review: Screaming Females- Ugly

 Hey all,

Got a new review up on Glide Magazine.

Read it right C"HERE!!!!!

It is of RtBE favorite Screaming Females newest release, Ugly.  This is a hell of an album.

If you are a fan of any sort of rock and roll it is worth it, possessing flashes of Punk, Thrash and Arena Rock.  The band has been playing a lot of these songs live so they weren't brand new to me, but the production and tracking is fantastic, really not one weak tune.

We have talked about them on the site a ton even took some pics, and we were lucky enough to interview Marissa back in the day, who simply put is one of the best guitarists out there.

The band as a whole is amazing though, give the review a read, give the new video a peak below, buy the album and most importantly see them live when they come to your town.

Here is the albums first single with an awesome video, "It All Means Nothing"

Here are some live clips of songs from Ugly:
"Rotten Apple"


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Shinedown - Amaryllis Review

Hey all,

Got a new review up on Gotham Rocks.

Check it out Right C'here!!!

The people over at Gotham Rocks are focusing on the Hard Rock vein of music and Shinedown, fits that bill.

One of the fun things about reviewing albums is that it gets you to listen to things that you may never have checked out and Shinedown fits that bill as well, RtBE would have skipped over them, but it is fun to be able to give a listen to things out of your wheel house.

Give a few tracks a listen below and feel free to grab the album here.  



LES Heritage Film Series Tonight: Happy 90th Birthday Charles Mingus!

The fine folks at NYPL have done it again with tonight's free event.  The LES Film Series has put together another in their line of amazing movies this time celebrating one of the best bass players to ever live, Charlie Mingus

My co-worker Sean has put this project together down at Seward Park Library and it should be a great event.  Here is the description of the film that will be shown:
 Mingus (1968, 59 min., 16mm) 
Thomas Reichman directs this 1966 interview with jazz musician Charlie Mingus at the time of his eviction from his lower Manhattan loft.  With his five-year-old daughter Carolyn and amidst the clutter of his belongings, the famed double bass player, pianist, composer and bandleader, addresses the camera and discusses his work, the discrimination he experienced in the United States and abroad, and the often complicated relationships of men and women. Mingus' monologue is intercut with footage of him performing at Lennies On The Turnpike with numbers including: "All the Things You Are," "Secret Love," and "Take the A Train."  At the conclusion, Mingus is evicted from his home and arrested on a mistaken drug charge.  His belongings are hauled away and his double bass is (albeit temporarily) abandoned on the city street.

Tuesday April 3, 2012
6:30 p.m.
Seward Park Branch Library
Community Room
192 East Broadway
New York, NY 10002
(212) 477-6770

It should be a fun time and a neat little piece of the LES to check out for free with a knowledgeable staff there to help you out.  So stop by if you can. 

Monday, April 2, 2012

Dylan Cover #42 Flogging Molly "The Times They Are A-Changin"

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 Flogging Molly's doing "The Times They Are A Changing"

Thoughts on Dylan Original:
Well it is his most famous song for a reason, it is one of the greatest ever produced in any genre, ever.  


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
Flogging Molly does up the Celtic Folk/Rock with joy, but have always been a bit down on my personal list of Irish/American band favorites, usually duking it out with Dropkick Murphys for 3rd or 4th place on the list of things.  The band has a great lyrical touch and blends genre's like Punk/Folk/Rock and have usually added a political tinge to things, equipping their live show with a rally vibe.  Let's See how they do on the cover of a classic...

Thoughts on Cover:
Perhaps the toughest Dylan song to cover as "Times" is his most iconic and really a perfect number in it's original form.  There have also been tons of covers of this song so to stand out would be really something.  Stand out, Stand Up, Jump Up, Flogging Molly's has done up a winning version of this tune and deserve praise.  The tempo changes are exciting after starting the first verse in a traditional sense to kick up the drum beat at the "Come writers and critics" line adding violins and energy to the mix.  A really cool take on a tune that has been covered to death.  Great job.

Grade: A  

Wilson's Take:
Irony is the curse of the Irish.
Flogging Molly's "The Times They Are a Changing" is no exception. For given their pounding-Irish-ruckus-of-a-sound the "Times" most certainly are not changing. With this cover, the listener may as well be stumbling through early 20th century Dublin with Joyce.
Flogging Molly achieved a modest amount of airtime with "If I Ever Leave This World Alive" - a tune that doesn't get nearly enough credit for the piece of beauty it is. In comparison, every other modern love song sounds cheap...pretentious. Who but the Irish could yoddle: "In a word, don't shed a tear...I'll be here when it all gets weird" and leave you misty-eyed and grateful for departures? You get the sense that the singer's got one arm thrown around his beloved's shoulder, while the other is sloshing around a pint...ahh the Irish! God's very own doomed philosophers.
This cover's worth a listen. Where Dylan's original "Times They Are a Changing" now seems like a period piece, Flogging Molly's version reminds us - fittingly - that nothing of the human soul ever changes.