Monday, September 30, 2013

Dylan Cover #106 John Mayer "Don't Think Twice, It's Alright" Live

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune comes from the John Mayer and is a live cover of "Don't Think Twice, It's Alright"

Thought's on Original:
From the first time we reviewed a cover of this tune:
Yet another one of the mega-Dylan tunes that we haven't covered someone else covering on this site (got that covered?).  Hard to believe because this song is so iconic and flat out awesome.  Biting and yet not bitter, a toss off of the grandest proportions, "Don' Think Twice" is epic and yet so straight forwardly simple.  It easily ranks as one of the bard's best works, truly a classic.  
Cover:

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
Ahh, John Mayer. An artist who in this day in age brings back an instant response. You can focus on the Grammy awards, the TMZ lifestyle or the blues admiration, but we are the sum of our parts and Mayer has been in the spotlight for a while now because of a combination of all of those things. Our only time seeing him we were really impressed with his playing...until he tried to cover Jimi Hendrix and then we thought this was a kid with a lot of talent who needed to age a bit in all aspects.  
Thoughts on Cover:
Straight ahead, live, acoustic with no frills or any distractions this is a solid cover if not inventive. Mayer skips the harmonica which is iconic in this tune, but he whistles to make up for it a bit. The strumming on acoustic is really top notch pushing this one up a bit also is the mere fact he is covering it at one of his shows, exposing yet another generation to Dylan. 
Grade: B-

Friday, September 27, 2013

Full Show Friday: The Del McCoury Band Delfest 2013

Last year we searched the murky back waters of youtube to find full concerts and posted them to the site monthly.  That was all well and good but this year RtBE is upping the ante with a show every week to 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...The Del McCoury Band!

This week we get our bluegrass on proper with a pro-shot, pro sounding (if a bit low) show from the masters of Americana Bluegrass, The Del McCoury Band. A really gorgeous set of music from the talented group who seems to do this kind of beautiful playing in their sleep.The namesake is sporting a hell of a jacket at his festival, which happened this past May. This is the 6th time the group has had it's own festival and the lineup was stellar for fans of bluegrass music.

Enjoy the show:

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Album Review: Vampire Weekend-Modern Vampires Of The City

Vampire Weekend
Modern Vampires of the City
** out of *****

The New York City heady quartet turn out their third collection of densely upbeat pop tunes while trying to peel back their "afro pop light" label. The stripped down production can devlop into some interesting tension periods but it feels like too many ideas are crammed into songs that simply can't hold them afloat.

There is no doubting this quartet's talent, each of the tracks here have flashes of greatness but missteps (while sometimes part of the fun) seem to hold things back. The upbeat bounce and horns of "Diane Young" is a potential show stopper that has a huge build in there somewhere but the schizophrenic changes muddle the power and drama. A track like "Everlasting Arms" plays the same way, things are going along swimmingly until a violin break comes out of left field and kills the vibe. Having worked with co-producer Ariel Rechtshaid (who is behind pop megastars Justin Bieber and Kylie Minogue) the dramatic shifts from bar to bar creating awkward changes; some of the tracks feel like they are targeted at an ADD mind.  

When things stay in one place like on "Don't Lie" the best results are produced as the band lets the song be the star. A sturdy beat, adult lyrics and the subtle barque harpsichord injection doesn't even derail things. Not all the sounds and musicality are freaky for the sake of freaky, "Ya Hey"has a great beat and lush production, even disregarding the squeaky chorus sample.

"Finger Back" plays with tempos, raw drum sounds and scratchy electro keys while silly lyrics and chirpy vocal style rollover the song. The frantic dance tempo becomes exciting before the unexpected uptown poetry break brings things down and then, when things start up, they stop suddenly. The band had a good thing rolling in the exuberance and the whimsy but then simply over thought it, like Modern Vampires of the City in general.  
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Having heard the album when it came and wrote it off as not my thing, I was urged by someone I respect greatly to check it back out. Still not sold. I am clearly out of touch with the critical press on this one, but to me this sounds scattered, light and experimental in an unfulfilled way.  Will give their next one a shot...but pretty sure I am in the minority with these guys.

Support them here, buy the album here and peep a sample below:
"Don't Lie"

"Finger Back"

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Album Review: Black Joe Lewis -Electric Slave

 Black Joe Lewis
Electric Slave
*** out of *****

The cover screams Hendrix from his photo shoot that ended up on some of the Smash Hits records, the music contained within also takes its cue being much more rock oriented here then Black Joe Lewis has been in the past. Where BJL's previous efforts were more soul oriented Electric Slave gets raw and aggressive. The act has also drops the "& The Honeybears" moniker from their name, if this shift signals a change or a one off it remains to be seen, but the backing players all appear to have remained the same.

The scuzzy blues riff of "Skulldiggin'" opens the effort with a heavy stomp and fuzzing six string while Lewis shouts his lyrics over the top of the fray. Lewis has never had the most powerful or sweetest of retro soul voices (JC Brooks and others come to mind) and on Electric Slave he takes a back seat from proper front man to let the power of the band swell.  

"Young Girls" is a nice combo tune that works with this style, let's call it roadhouse punk but Lewis then returns back to his bread and butter soul roots with "Come to My Party" that is highlighted by some cool bass lines. The electric blues gets play with a spotlight on the groups horn section during the trio "Dar Es Salaam", "My Blood Ain't Running Right", and "Guilty". The blaring horns and revved up six strings get the hips moving while the slow blues of "Vampire" cools things down.

The lyrics to "Golem" are eyebrow raising ("One hand on your shoulder, another in your wallet/Smile in your face, while he's stabbing you in your back") but the funk can't be denied and either can the stripped down production

More raw then say contemporary Gary Clark Jr., Black Joe Lewis has carved him and his band out an interesting slice of the blues/retro soul scene. As a front-man, BJL lacks a sense of charisma or charm that is pretty vital for this style of playing, especially with a voice that seems secondary to the music but things are more rock here so it matters less.

Punkish in attitude, professional in technique and retro in delivery Electric Slave has the feel of a leader and band finding their collective feet with this new direction.
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I am interested as why Black Joe Lewis and crew changed their name for this one, but the disk feels like a shift in styles. While enjoyable I think there is definite room for growth, just seems to be something slightly off and I love this style of playing. I missed them live in NOLA a few years ago, so I am hoping to catch them to get a better feel for the group.

Support the band here, buy the album here and peep some samples below:
"Skulldiggin'"

"Come To My Party"

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Album Review: The Dodo's -Carrier

The Dodo's 
Carrier
*** out of *****

Unfortunately The Dodo's suffered recently with the loss of guitarist Chris Reimer who had a flair for coloring the bands sound with noise-rock. Carrier has splashes of the artsy playing Reimer loved but is strictly an indie-pop positive send off for a friend and an engaging listen for the rest of us.

Meric Long and Logan Kroeber begin the disk on a mellow note playing with sound as "Transformer" swirls before the bands ear catching percussive tendencies come out on "Substance". The band was founded on rhythm and while not as frantic as past efforts Carrier continues the trend of engaging rhythmic pattern even without a bass being present.

The pop touches with cool drumming continues on "Confidence" as the Long picks out a pattern behind his mellow singing of the title phrase before the pedal gets put down half way through the track amping the tempo. The guitars swing around each other as the tension rises, drumming remains choppy and moving as things soar. Tracks like "Stranger", "Destroyer" and "Relief" continue this trend of keeping things straight ahead before augmenting slightly with phrases, instrumentation or production slightly out of the norm.

"Family" has some engaging lyrics and guitar lines from Long that shine while "Death" seems light and wispy, far from cold and final. Along those lines, "The Current" seems to be hinting at something larger behind the surface but never gets there, pretty in the moment but not long lasting or exhilarating.

Overall, Carrier is indie pop pretty with enough engaging musical textures that things float around your ear amicably.
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Cool band, caught them on Letterman the other night, The Dodo's are solid live, while Carrier is good it never reaches at the heights hinted at in the disk or from the bands live playing. Need to catch them soon, as in all bands like this adding a bass would def help the sound in RtBE's opinion.

Support them here, buy the album here and peep a sample below:
"Substance"

"Confidence" Live on Letterman:

Monday, September 23, 2013

New Pearl Jam Tune with Video: "Sirens"

Well PJ will be playing NYC soon and we will be catching them in New Orleans for Voodoo Fest, but the second song off their upcoming Lightning Bolt. "Sirens" is here give it a whirl and then we will state our opinion:

Ehhh this one is a bit weird. Very middle of the road bland, piano heavy without being interesting or inspiring...hmmm, we liked "Mind Your Manners" when we first heard that but this one seems dull.  We hope the full album will be better and this will flow when the disk is in motion...thoughts on this tune?

Dylan Cover #105 The Jayhawks/Justin Townes Earle "You Ain't Going Nowhere" Live

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune comes from the The Jayhawks/Justin Townes Earle and is a live cover of "You Ain't Goin' Nowhere"

Thoughts on Dylan Original:
From the first time we addressed this cover:
A great song, and one that sounds so simple.  It always felt to me that these are the kind of songs Dylan has seeping out of his pores, with lines like "Tailgates and Substitutes" that anywhere else would sound foolish yet here works wonders.  The musical backing from the original Band version is loose and matched fantastically with the lyrics.  I am sure it wasn't as easy going as it sounds on the final version, but what a gem of a track.   
Cover:

Thoughts on Cover Artists:
These are a few artists who I like everything I hear from but have not gotten deep into either. The Jayhawks are pretty rock-solid alt-country coming from a time period when that phrase was a dirty word and they influenced a ton of bands in that genre. Justin Townes Earle is a great musician in his own right and son of song writing royalty but we just haven't given him a ton of listening time, perhaps we should rectify that. 
Thoughts On Cover:
Fantastic and easy. Not straying far from the original the combo group uses the song to end a show and retains all the rustic charm of the track. Not very inventive, but professional, solid and an easy song to hear on this Monday.
Grade: B 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Full Show Friday: Dire Straits Live from Basel 1992

Last year we searched the murky back waters of youtube to find full concerts and posted them to the site monthly.  That was all well and good but this year RtBE is upping the ante with a show every week to 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...Dire Straits!

This is a pro shot, pro sounding show from Dire Straits from 1992 when they were touring for, On Every Street, their come back album. This was also their first major tour since the mid 80's so anticipation ran high. While we here at RtBE respect Dire Straits and dig their hits we have never been huge fans, I think it boils down to overall slick sound and Mark Knopfler's intentionally muffled singing style.

That said the show is pretty solid, and the huge crowd reminds us that they were one of the most popular bands in the world at one time. All of our favorites are here, "Sultan's Of Swing", "Walk Of Life" and their best song "Romeo and Juliet" which delivers the goods each time it is played and here it showcases some fine sax work.

We recently caught him open for Bob Dylan, and he only played one old tune from his Dire Strait days, so concerts like these will probably be the only way to enjoy that groups sound now:

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Album Review: Screaming Females-Chalk Tape

Screaming Females 
Chalk Tape 
*** out of *****

The punk trio Screaming Females decided to switch up their musical technique for a project titled Chalk Tape released on Don Giovanni Records earlier this year. While the band was working on their excellent Ugly album they decided to try recording in a different style, writing down musical ideas on a chalk board, recording the ideas in the moment and moving on. The resulting EP is a marked departure from the typical SF sound and a great example of how talented this trio is.

"Sick Bed" opens the tape and immediately signals there is a change in store as Marissa Paternoster's signature guitar sound is nowhere to be found. This rhythm heavy track focuses on vocals as Paternoster sings harmonies with herself over banging drums and sliding bass. "Crushing The Kingdom" is a straight shot of hardcore punk while "Bad Men" is an acoustic take on the title that adds chattering male vocals behind the scenes and a tape recorded outro.

The chaotic and aggressive "Wrecking Ball" throws back to early SF adventures with more freedom as the group adds a a broken chime ending to the screeching cacophony that proceeds it. The band breaks out the hand drums for "Into The Sun" while friends Shell Shag join for the disk closing pop punk duet of "Green Vapors". 

The track "Poison Arrow" is the closest to an outtake of Ugly that you get here, but for the most part this is a complete departure for the band and a fresh take on their sound. If you have never checked them out before you may want to start elsewhere, but this experimental side should hopefully keep things fresh as the band progresses. 
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Much love is always given to Screaming Females on RtBE as we think they are super talented, this stripped down side of them is just as appealing and a perfect use of an EP release to compliment their punk style. Here's hoping they never stop experimenting.

Support the band here, grab the album here and peep the bizarre-o video for "Poison Arrow" here:

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Album Review: Barrence Whitfield and The Savages -Dig Thy Savage Soul

Hey all,

Got a new review up on Glide.

You can read it Right C'here!!!

It is of Barren Whitfield and The Savages newest release Dig Thy Savage Soul.

We really dig this style and the playing on the disk is infectious. The group apparently came up in the 80's with mild college radio success but they still have the fire and retro soul that is all the rage these days.

Unfortunately we missed them when they played NYC this weekend, but we do hope to catch them live at some point soon.Another excellent record from the people over at Bloodshot Records.

Support the band here, grab the album here, catch them live and peep some samples below:
"The Corner Man"


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Album Review: Tony Joe White -Hoodoo

Tony Joe White
Hoodoo
**and1/2 out of *****

Tony Joe White has had a pretty amazing career, after becoming known on the national music scene for the semi hit "Polk Salad Annie" which was covered by everyone from Elvis to Tom Jones. He also recorded and wrote songs for greats like Jerry Lee Lewis and Tina Turner. His most recent release Hoodoo finds the songwriter stripping down to a swampy blues style that fits his restrained vocals and soulful playing.

The style is fairly simple and straight ahead but has enough deviation to keep things interesting, a good example is on "Holed Up" which plays predominately like a normal blues track, but has some textured guitar feedback that keeps you on your toes before a complete drum drop out leads to the closing of the tune. 

The production is excellent here, soft and warm as a summer night sky in the bayou as tracks "9 Foot Sack" and "Sweet Tooth" drip out like molasses. "Alligator, Mississippi"and "Storm Comin" both try to pick up the tempo but neither really takes off while "The Flood" takes things down a notch with vocals that barely scratch the surface feeling off the cuff.

"Who You Gonna Hoodoo Now" has classic written all over the track with its easy groove and rising chorus, but White keeps his singing in check where other vocalists would get their gospel shout on. It will be interesting to see if any current artists give this track a cover injecting it with some passion.

In the end it will be White's vocals that will either endear listeners to the album or turn them off. Billed as a "almost live, first take" album, Hoodoo would have benefited from more of focus on the vocal delivery, but the overall effort makes for a relaxing rollin' listen. 
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Tony Joe White, has talent and blues fans should take note of this release that comes out on Tuesday.

Support the artist here, pick up the disk here and peep an interview with Tony Joe regarding the new album here:

Monday, September 16, 2013

Dylan Cover #104 Francesca Bavaro "Wedding Song"

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 Francesca Bavaro playing "Wedding Song"

Thoughts on Original:
Coming off the underrated Planet Waves, this song has always been tricky for us. Dylan is never this direct, this open. It is not to say he isn't honest, he very well may be here and it could be a beautiful song of caring about his wife. It even has the benefit of not explicitly naming her like in "Sara", but this is also coming from the same album where "Dirge" is featured and seems to be the flip-side to this coin in all aspects. Taking "Wedding Song" at face value makes it a lovely sweet tune, but are things ever that easy with the Bard? 
Cover:

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
As we have mentioned multiple times in this series, we love just finding random artists and seeing how people interrupt Dylan. We know nothing of Francesca Bavaro outside of her youtube page and her sharing the same last name as our favorite tight end
Thoughts on Cover:
Just straight up camera ukelele and a voice, pretty sparse but still a fine version. Bavaro's singing is the highlight and while she goes up the scale towards the end of the song maybe a bit more energy at the beginning of the track would have made it even more powerful, but for a live, personal cover it is pretty solid.
Grade B-

Friday, September 13, 2013

Full Show Friday: Koko Taylor Live 1978

Last year we searched the murky back waters of youtube to find full concerts and posted them to the site monthly.  That was all well and good but this year RtBE is upping the ante with a show every week to 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...Koko Taylor!

Well here is a nice surprise, a full live show from Blues Queen Koko Taylor. The video comes from 1978 right around the time Taylor's fantastic Earthshaker LP was released. The songs from that that record feature here and they are doozy's, staples of the genre sung by a vocalist who is timeless.

Flipping the sexes on "I'm A Man" to "I'm A Woman" is perfect as Koko proves with this take on Bo Diddley's classic. Koko's gravely take on "Let The Good Times Roll" is a marvel as she matches yelps with lead guitar player Emmett "Maestro" Sanders. Sanders expertly opens the show by the way with a take on "Call My Job" which is a scorching blues number. His axe matches perfectly with Koko on tracks like her original "Baby Please Don' Dog Me" and the classic elongated "Wang Dang Doodle". Have fun with this bluesy full show Friday before you start screaming "Hey Bartender!"

Enjoy:

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Album Review: Sebadoh -Defend Yourself

Sebadoh
Defend Yourself
***and1/2 out of *****

Lou Barlow's always let his freak flag fly when playing with his Sebadoh band mates, now reuniting with Jason Loewenstein and Bob D'Amico for the first time in 14 years it brings out some creative juices once again, this time mostly from pain.

Defend Yourself comes after Barlow's long time marriage has ended and from the title on down the album deals with all the ins and outs of such a trying event. There are no easy answers and Barlow runs through a spectrum of emotions trying to grapple with change by using his art in a cathartic way.   

Early on "Beat" plays as one of the best tunes on the album with a stirring guitar solo, an odd off-kilter/jarring ending and lyrics which sum it up best when it is sung that it is "pointless to explain"; emotions, history, pain and love are all interwoven. The title track has some searing guitars that are layered and produced wonderfully while "Let It Out" goes the other way with delicate texture and acoustic flourishes. 

The quirky country-lite pop rock that Sebadoh play with so well shows up on "Oxygen" and "Inquiries" both lamenting that things could have been different. There is some pain here, but the overall feel is more questions and concerns then anger and bile, age matures even Lou apparently; "Can't Depend" even contains a sweet sounding guitar phrase throughout. 

The only down side (besides Lou's vocals not for everyone) is a lot of this material plays the same way, and at 15 songs things become repetitive. The out of place closer "No Wounds" might seem odd, but the difference in tone is welcome at that point."Separate" also switches up the feeling with its quick punky pulse.

On "State of Mine" Barlow takes some blame but never wallows in self pity. The music sounds vibrant, and while he is hurting he knows life goes on and for Sebadoh there seems to be a second life waiting to take off.
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While our Dinosaur Jr. love is well noted, we have never been completely enamored with Lou's side project Sebadoh. Harmacy got a lot of play early in college but we haven't gone back to it in years. This disk is a good listen for mega fans of the group and newcomers alike. Pained throughout and not an uplifting listen, it is none the less a welcome return.

Support the band here, grab the album here, peep a video sample below:
"State Of Mine"

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Album Review: Arctic Monkeys -AM

Hey All,

Got a new review up on Glide

Read it Right C'here!!!

It is a review of one of our favorite bands newest disk, the Arctic Monkey's AM.

This band continues to impress as they reach beyond their "normal" sound, experimenting and keeping things unexpectedly fresh.

We rated their last one high, but this year they have topped themselves with AM.  I am curious to see how they play these live next to some of their more aggressive numbers, but it should be fun none the less.

Support the band here, buy the album here, catch them live here and peep a few samples below:
Do I Wanna Know?


R U Mine?

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Album Review: Action Bronson-SAAAB Stories

Action Bronson
SAAAB Stories EP
**and1/2 out of *****

Living somewhere between an EP and a full length comes Action Bronson's newest release, SAAAB Stories. The MC has paired with Harry Fraud on production and the overall aesthetic is more laid back and easy going then Action's last, the fantastic Rare Chandeliers. Here loopy beats and understated music back the Queens MC as he continues to rhyme about food, women, his neighborhood and wilding out.

Bronson's flow can vary, at times like on the intro "72 Virgins" which finds him over stuffing some of his lines with word play; he sacrifices flow to paint his lyrical picture. "The Rockers" name checks the fantastic Marty Jannetty from 80's WWF fame, while containing a quintessential Bronson end phrase: "Addicted but ain't nothing prescripted/Baby clams from Montauk, mix it up with the linguistics/Bitch I'm high". Here he serves up his foodie love, his metaphors and his humor into a tastey dish.

The closing "Seven Series Triplets" contains intriguing piano fills and shifting beats ending the release on a high note. Prodigy and Raekwon add verses with Bronson who has always resembled a slightly twisted Ghostface Killah. In the end the albums short run time and less then memorable beats will make SAAAB Stories just a passing fling but Bronson continues to showcase a talent that could produce greatness some day very soon.
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We first found Action Bronson last year, and we were impressed. Rare Chandeliers is a really solid release as The Alchemist shines just as brightly as Bronson on that disk. Harry Fraud lags behind here, but things are more sterile then dull in the beat department. Action himself comes off fine and with a track record of putting things out often, we are eagerly anticipating his next release.
Support the artist here, pick up the album here and check a few samples below:
"Seven Series Triplets"

Monday, September 9, 2013

Metal Monday: Free Live Vektor Download

How about some Metal for your Monday night? Coming from Scion A/V we have a free download of a Vektor show from earlier this year in LA. You can click here to stream and/or download the two tracks.
This show was part of an Earache Record Showcase and really works as showcase for Vektor's killer riffs, brutal drums and lightning changes. The thrashmetal group is from Tempe, AZ and has gained popularity in that scene. Both tracks here feature excellent musicianship, screaming vocals that blend with their frantic guitar work and full speed sonic assaults. Enjoy them today and throw your metal horns in the air.

Here is an older Vektor track for more Metal goodness:


Dylan Cover #103 The Airborne Toxic Event "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 the The Airborne Toxic Event of the Dylan tune "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.
Cover:

Thoughts On Cover Artist:
I don't know much about this band other then they have a name that sounds like they should be singing Deathmetal. They are more indie rock and have dabbled with orchestral arraignments and are based in LA. Seem like a fine bunch of upstanding citizens.
Thoughts On Cover:
The song starts off simple and gradually adds small changes, a backing vocal here, a swelling string section there. A very soothing and structured cover that never detracts from the amazing lyrics as vocally the cover is great, really can't nitpick much about this one as it rings true upon each listen.
Grade: A-

Friday, September 6, 2013

Full Show Friday: Santana Montreux 1993

Last year we searched the murky back waters of youtube to find full concerts and posted them to the site monthly.  That was all well and good but this year RtBE is upping the ante with a show every week to 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...Santana!

Santana is interesting, for a guy who clearly has so much soul and is ultra spiritual with his playing he can get awfully cheesy at times. That mix makes him palpable to the masses and still endears him to guitar junkies. Here at this pro-shot, pro-sound show from Montreux in 93 he pairs back up with a guitar partner from his 70's fusion period, John McLaughlin a giant in his own right.

The show starts with Santana dedicating "Somewhere In Heaven" to Miles Davis who both played guitarists played with. The tune is a good microcosm of Santana with it's light FM lyrics mixed with frantic musical interludes. "Life is For Living" pops up as does "Make Somebody Happy/Get It In your Soul" which lets bassist Myron Dove slap it to funky town. The show closes with one of the best Santana songs, "Jingo".

Enjoy the concert:

Carlos Santana - Guitarra
Chester Thompson - Teclados
John McLaughlin - Guitarra
Alex Ligertwood - Vocal
Raul Rekow - Conga
Karl Perazzo - Timbal
Wilfrido Reyes - Bateria
Myron Dove - Bajista

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Album Review: Body/Head -Coming Apart

Hey all,

Got a new review up on Glide.

You can Read it Right C'here!!!

It is of Body/Head's newest release Coming Apart. The group is Kim Gordon's first Sonic Youth outing as she whirls guitar noise with Bill Nace, trading six string scratches back and forth.

This is strictly arty noise rock, and not for those wanting easy soothing listens. It made me laugh when in the press release they said they were going more for songs, no verse-chorus-bridge here, but that is too strict of a definition for the duo. 

I like this stuff and enjoyed reviewing it but I know it is not for everyone so giving it a star rating is always difficult for people to judge it. This isn't the best of it's kind, but it is pretty solid for this type of stuff also the more I spun it the more I dug it which is always a positive.

Hmm albums from Thurston, Kim, and one from Ranaldo and Shelley coming soon...Sonic's seem alive and kicking in various forms...that is a big time plus. As we have mentioned SY are one of our all time fav's.

Buy the album here, catch them live and peep some samples below:
"Actress"

Live:
Body / Head from Taping Policies on Vimeo.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Album Review: The Pixies -EP 1

The Pixies
EP 1
***and1/2 out of *****

When The Pixies announced they would be making a new music the indie rock world cheered, when people found out it was without Kim Deal most were disappointed/confused, when the first single "Bagboy" was released earlier this summer we for one were less then hopeful. Now comes the first in a line of sporadic EP's from the band that they will release digitally and on vinyl through their website.

The first of these, ingeniously titled errr... EP1 seems to grab that magic that made The Pixies originally special. Frank Black obviously dominates but the tunes are cohesive, engaging, and pretty; happily pushing The Pixies fully into the 21st century (finally).

The first single "Indie Cindy" plays in that familiar loud/quiet/loud formula that the band made famous, aggression mixes with the soothing and the bands adds an outro that delights. Same goes for EP closer "What Goes Boom" that plays with that back and fourth tension and screeches with some exhilarating guitar work from Black and Joey Santiago feeling otherworldly at times.

"Another Toe In The Ocean" is the most straight ahead rock song here, with swirling axes, blissful backup vocals bass is taken over for these sessions by Simon Archer, but Kim Shattuck will tour with the band. The opener "Andro Queen" may hold the most promise with it's light marching drums via Dave Lovering, great vocal work/lyrics and shimmering all around production. A weird chanting bridge pins it a Pixies tune through and through showing the band still capable of enchanting music, here's hoping EP 2 arrives soon. 
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Wow, Lee Ranaldo and The Pixies on the same day, what year is this 1988? Good to hear these songs though, we did not like "Bagboy" upon release, and like it less now, but these 4 tunes are all excellently crafted. This EP project (if not very creatively titled) holds a lot of promise.

Support the band here, grab the disk here (and stream here for now, thanks WaxRamble) Peep a video for "Indie Cindy" below:

New Lee Ranaldo Tune, Album Due Next Month.

So I just reviewed the newest release from Kim Gordon for Glide (will be posted soon) and in looking around I noticed that fellow ex-Sonic Youth'ians Lee Ranaldo and Steve Shelley are coming out with a new album next month.

The album is from Lee Ranaldo and The Dust as opposed to Between The Time and The Tides being just a proper Lee solo disk (although it is hard to tell the difference these days). The Dust are drummer Steve Shelley, guitarist Alan Licht and bassist Tim Lüntzel all who have worked with Ranaldo in the past.  We loved his last disk and if the first track is like the rest of the disk we are in for another treat, peep "Lecce, Leaving" below:


Now that is a fun tune! The new album will be called Last Night On Earth and it will be released on Matador Records, you can find more info here.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Album Review: The Rolling Stones -Hyde Park Live

The Rolling Stones
Hyde Park Live
**** out of *****

44 Years ago The Rolling Stones played a historic concert in London's Hyde Park. It was a mega show for the band having been out of the public eye not performing for over 2 years (an eternity for that time) and they headlined a show for a ton of fans (estimates run between 250,000 and 500,000). That concert was played under the pale of Brian Jones recent death, as guitarist Mick Taylor joined the band for the first time.

This summer the band returned to the Park and played again, July 6th and July 13th combining the best of those shows for an iTunes only limited time release that finds ageless rockers in tip top form even bringing Mick Taylor back in the fold. At this point making grandfather rock and rollers jokes is just pointless especially when they are still one of the best live bands on the planet.  

Hyde Park Live contains hits, slightly deeper cuts and only one new tune. While the band finds its legs with the opening classics "Start Me Up" and "It's Only Rock and Roll" things start hitting their stride with the 80's grooving of "Emotional Rescue" with Mick's Falsetto woo-hoo's the funky bass of Daryl Jones all moving around some slinky horn work.  "Street Fighting Man" contains an aggressive closing workout as the band seems amped to play the fan requested song.

Of course the hits just keep on coming "Ruby Tuesday", "Paint It Black", "Honky Tonk Women" you know them all and can sing along to every word with reason; they all still sound great when the Stones play them live.  Keith Richards takes over for a delicate rendition of "You Got The Silver" and a surprise take on Some Girls "Before They Make Me Run" before the odd 80's funk comes back hard with "Miss You" with Jones again leading things.

"Midnight Rambler" lets the bar room swagger out of the bag, Chuck Leavell's keys plink proudly as does Mick's harp playing. Taylor riffs his way confidently leading the three guitar attack with his smooth runs while Ronnie Wood and Richards slash roughly behind him. Crawling to a halt it works it's way back up from the depths cementing itself as a set highlight.

The hits don't ever end as "Gimme Shelter", "Jumping Jack Flash", and "You Can't Always Get What You Want" (complete with choir) all reach their own vaulted highs. The arraignment of "Sympathy For The Devil" has a slick over produced feel to it that doesn't work as well as past live versions but "Brown Sugar" pumps from the opening notes. 

The songs are strong here, sure there may be better versions of individual tunes elsewhere but this live collection is proof that the band still matters and are by no means washed up.  Who would have thought that 44 years ago?
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When we saw the stones a few years ago we were quite simply blown away. They were so fucking rock and roll it was scary, it was easy to see why millions of bands have sprouted from listening and watching these guys. How could you not want to be a lead singer after watching Mick Jagger? Even at their advanced ages the group still plays with a looseness that is refreshing, sure they are big business now, but the band has earned it. This collection of tunes will join the bands long list of live albums and stand proudly next to them.

Support the band here, and peep some video of the show below...and even a clip from the band playing there in 1969:
"Midnight Rambler"
  
"Stray Cat Blues & No Expectations" from 1969 (two of our favorites)

Monday, September 2, 2013

Dylan Cover #102 Patti Rain and Friends "Union Sundown"

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 Patti Rain and Friends playing "Union Sundown"

Thoughts on Original:
From what has become an annual tradition here:
Wanted to pick this one for Labor Day as it is Dylan's take on the lack of US manufacturing jobs as well as the increasing flux of capitalism in society and the death of unions.  The idea of greed taking over is nothing new, but this song seems to come from an impulsive Dylan (a lot do) and shows up on Infidel's of which Dylan has commented something along the lines of "Those songs stuck around too long".  Ideas seem to be a bit jumbled on this disk, but not on this tune, his lament at no good paying job for American workers is clear, but he isn't passing the buck.  It is all of HIS products that are foreign made, this isn't a plea for change as a younger Dylan might have done; it is a simple statement of fact...and a sad one at that.  Having grown up in a extremely pro-Labor house hold I just wanted to point this tune out and the fact that Dylan wrote it almost 30 years ago, and things have only gotten worse... Happy Labor Day....  
Cover:

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
I will confess to have never hearing of Patti Rain before this but with a little research she seems to be a folk singer from Chicago who has been well received, winning a few awards in her time. From the info on the comments "The Friends" are: Frank Raven-Harmonica; Fran Kondorf-Bass; Jimmy Tomasello-Acoustic Guitar, Vox; David Sims-Drums; John Mead-Lead Guitar, Vox; Joe Labozetta-Keyboards. 
Thoughts on Cover:
This is a really good, loose live cover from Patti Rain and Friends from the Elbo Room in Chicago. The recording isn't perfect but it doesn't have to be, Patti nails all the vocals while the band has a talent to run around the phrases. The Harp on this version stands out as a high point as does the second acoustic guitar. A fairly straight ahead cover, but a good one. Wish more people covered this one.
Grade: B