Monday, August 31, 2015

Dylan Cover #199 Solomon Burke "Maggie's Farm"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune comes from Solomon Burke and it is his take on "Maggie's Farm"
Thoughts on Dylan's Original:
From the first time we tackled a cover of this tune:
"Maggie's Farm" is classic Dylan, everyone thinks they know what it's about and they are sure they are right, but they all think different things. I will confess I like the sped up Electric version from Newport Folk Festival that caused the end of popular folk music (in theory) and really solidified Dylan's pop music career. It is a great tune and really flows in lots of forms making it perfect to cover. 
Cover: 

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
Solomon Burke is the man. From the killer "Cry To Me" to the stone cold classic "Everybody Needs Somebody To Love" Burke was large in all senses. The Bishop of Soul was a legend and probably doesn't get the respect that he deserves in the larger scheme of music appreciation but that's OK. Rolling Stone did rate him on their best singers list...so that's something. 
Thoughts on Cover:
A quick and to the point cover that grooves along effortlessly and showcasing Burke's voice which stays restrained. The pushing bass and scratching guitar are both sweet amping up the overall effort, even if in the end it just fine and a touch forgettable.  

Friday, August 28, 2015

Full Show Friday: Delta Spirit 5/1/10 Maquoketa, IA

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...Delta Spirit
Delta Spirit are a band that we have seen play very small venues during their first NYC shows to  Summer Stage in Central Park. They always have energy and play fun sets. This one is from Codfish Hollow Barn in Iowa, pretty sure this is our first Full Show Friday from Iowa.

It is on their tour for their second album, History From Below, and while we were not the biggest fans of that disk, this show is a good time. Listen to it, see the setlist and read Daytrotters account of things below, and most importantly Enjoy:


Setlist:
0:00:00 - Lovers Waltz
0:04:47 - Bleeding Bells
0:09:52 - Bushwick Blues
0:13:27 - Strange Vine
0:17:27 - Golden State
0:21:28 - Salt In The Wound
0:28:03 - People C'mon
0:31:21 - Ransom Man
0:37:26 - Vivian
0:43:25 - White Table
0:49:42 - St. Francis
0:53:49 - House Built for Two
1:00:37 - Wish You Were Here /Trashcan
1:05:25 - People, Turn Around!
1:14:26 - Crippler King
1:19:35 - Gimme Some Motivation

Summary:
This was a very special collection of bands -- Delta Spirit and Ra Ra Riot (who traded headlining spots all week), Nathaniel Rateliff, Free Energy and Pearly Gate Music -- and the only Barnstormer tour that kept the same lineup every night of the tour. It was filled with old friends and a couple of bands who had been buddies for a while as well.

We started the tour in West Liberty, Iowa, on a pretty perfect late spring night and then moved on to the first tour show we ever did in a legitimate venue, the always great Turner Hall Ballroom in Milwaukee. From there we ran into a strange snag, with the venue we were supposed to be using in Wisconsin pulled out from beneath us the night before the show by local authorities who had previously granted us permission to but the show on. We moved the show to the Walworth County Fairgrounds in Elkhorn, WI in the 11th hour and had a great night there -- playing Whiffle ball on the grounds pre-show. We then traveled to what became our favorite new barn in Monticello, Ill., just outside of Champaign. Definitely the best night of the tour thus far and it's evident in the recordings that the bands were on fire. The final night in Maquoketa, IA, site of Codfish Hollow, the energy and performances were doubled from the night before, with numerous sing-a-longs and guest appearances in sets. This was the first tour that we ended here and now it's the rule for a reason.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Dinosaur Jr. To Play 6 Nights At Bowery Ballroom

With great joy we will point out that tickets go on-sale tomorrow for Dinosaur Jr's six night run at NYC's best live music venue, Bowery Ballroom.
Thanks to Steve for the tip off, this is going to be an epic weekend of tunes. While Dino's first album is far from our favorite it is just going to be a joy having them in town for a few days and catching as many shows as we can with special guests galore.

Our love for Dino has been well documented here and on other sites, our favorite show from a few years ago was the band celebrating our favorite disk of theirs, You're Living All Over Me's 25 anniversary so we have high hopes for this one.

Until then how about some live Dino to wet the audio appetite:
 



Wednesday, August 26, 2015

What Is Dead May Never Die

While we know that Winter Is Coming, this post isn't actually about Game of Thrones but the quote fits one of the longest touring acts and our pick of best American Band ever, The Grateful Dead.
What Is Dead May Never Die
When the remaining members of the Dead announced "their last ever shows" to coincided with their 50th anniversary, I didn't care one bit, and this is from someone who spent a whole year of Monday's focusing on their shows on this here site. The main reason was because any/all incarnations of the band will never stop touring until all members are literally dead an even then I know, side projects, family members and fans will keep the vibe alive. 
Turns out those weren't the last shows after all and a variation of the Dead, (without Phil Lesh) will be touring again, as Dead & Company adding John Mayer to the fold and hitting Albany NY, the sight of one the bands (with Garcia) last great stands.

Glide has their list of dates up and if people are willing they can check them out. Us? We don't need to see any variation of their touring act when we can still revisit the real thing through the tapes err..digital audio/video. In fact lets listen to a tune now to start the day off proper:

Oh and it turns out George RR Martin is a Dead fan after all...
huh, that gives Damphair a whole new perspective...Hippy!

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Free Protomartyr Show This Weekend, New Song Now

The band Protomartyr has been pretty active the last few years and their newest album The Agent Intellect is due out in September on the always interesting label Hardly Art.
The group is an engaging mix of noisy rock, spacey escapism into ones mind and a pretty damn good groove. They are playing a Free show at Villain this weekend in Brooklyn, so you can check them out there. You can also check out their newest (and probably their best) song "Dope Cloud" here:


It is a good mix of angular lines, and moving drums, along with the more moody/noiserock-y "Why Does It Shake?" makes us very excited to hear the full album in the fall. Check that one out here:

Monday, August 24, 2015

Dylan Cover #198 Trevor Willmott & Juliana Richer Daily "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 live cover by Trevor Willmott & Juliana Richer Daily of the Dylan tune "Boots Of Spanish Leather"

Thoughts On Original:
From the first time we highlighted someone covering this tune:
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:
Have not heard of Trevor Willmott or Juliana Richer Daily before but it seems Juliana is a folk singer from Upstate New York who now resides in Nashville, TN you can listen to and buy her album from bandcamp here.  
Thoughts on Cover:
This is an interesting take, we have showcased a few Boots covers and some are even duet's but none have male/female vocals on every lyric. This doubling is unique to this cover and adds a new dimension. Two as one sort of thing...that said the song was written conversationally so the obvious twist is the Mandolin Orange cover that has the singers talking to each other, but both covers are excellent ways to kick off the week.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

nycTaper Late Summer Update

With Summer close to wrapping up we figured it was a good time to check in with our friends over at nycTaper. Boy has the crew been busy.
So many good shows it is going to take awhile to dig through them all, but safe to say the summer of 2015 sounds sweet.
First up for us is the Thurston Moore Band show from August 6th at Bowery Ballroom. Somehow this one slipped by us and we missed one of RtBE's all time favorites in our favorite NYC venue, thanks to the site though we can now hear the show.
We loved the Warren Haynes record release show we caught a few weeks back at Town Hall and now you can hear a set he did with Railroad Earth backing him up from Gathering of the Vibes.  A special guest even pops up in that one from some band called The Grateful Dead...
The Vibes keep giving and Warren shows back up for Wilco's set from the same festival. We dug their new album and lots of those songs get the live treatment here.
and we will end our spotlight with The Mekons show from Bowery Ballroom on 7/21. A good friend of ours highly recommends this band, so we can't wait to give it a listen.

Thanks again to nycTaper and all the hard work everyone over there does.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Free Stream/Download Talib Kweli Fuck The Money

Talib Kweli, the Brooklyn born MC has released a new full length for free titled appropriately, Fuck The Money.
This album finds him doing his chock-full-of rhyme style with contributions from Ab-Soul, The Alchemist as well as others. We dug his last release Gravitas and reviewed it here. We may get to review this one or we may not, either way, you don't need RtBE, you can check it out for yourself here or stream it below:

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Album Review: La Luz- Weirdo Shrine

Hey all got a new review up @glidemag which you can read Right C'here!!!
 It is of La Luz's newest release Weirdo Shrine.  This is a really solid album coming after some life altering events from the band, namely a near fatal van accident while on tour. We really dug their first release as well and hope to catch the band live when they come through NYC.

Support the group here, buy the album here and peep some video below:

Monday, August 17, 2015

Dylan Cover # 197 Louise Hoffsten "What Good Am I?"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune comes from Louise Hoffsten and is a live cover of "What Good Am I?" 

Thought's on Original:
From the first time we tackled a cover of this song:
Coming on the heels of Dylan's most powerful song in decades "What Good Am I?" can get lost on Oh Mercy, but the track is a sorrowful sweet plea. Slow and deliberate, questioning like the Louisiana night that may have inspired it. Dylan's vocal performance may not be his best but at the heart of it this is a really powerful song.  Not one of his better known tracks, but a goodie all the same. Simple and slow, direct without hidden agenda's (I think) all of which is a bit unique for Bob.
Cover:

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
I have not heard of Louise Hoffsten before this cover. She is a blues singer from Sweden and you can find more info on her here.
Thoughts on Cover:
Hoffsten sings this well and it is a nice if understated rendition of Dylan's song. There is some excellent harmonizing going on here, but the musicians outside of Hoffsten's harp are pretty nondescript. The most interesting part of the video is the cuts to Dylan himself watching the performance and offering zero reaction. Pretty funny.   

Friday, August 14, 2015

Full Show Friday: Earthless 5/21/15 De Helling - Utrecht, NL

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..Earthless!
Let the guitar pyrotechnics fly as Earthless take the stage from May 21st of this year in De Helling - Utrecht, NL. The three piece are an instrumental metal/stoner rock band that are killer, especially guitarist Isaiah Mitchell, but all the boys can cook.  

RtBE have covered the band before on the site but haven't dedicated a Full Show Friday to them yet, so we figured that was time to change. While this show isn't pro shot with pro sound it does a damn good job of covering everything. Of course we would like more bass in the mix, but for you guitar fiends out there give this a listen, works well as background music too... 

Enjoy:

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Album Review: Imaginary People- Dead Letterbox

Hey all got a new review up @glidemag which you can read Right C'here!!!
 It is of the NYC five piece Indie-Electro-Americana outfit Imaginary People. We shared an earlier song of the groups with you back in November and now the full length is out for you to grab.

The band is playing NYC often now so you should catch them when you can. Support the group here, buy the album here and peep some video below:

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

New Craig Finn Song "Newmyer's Roof"

A few months back we caught two of our favorite singer/songwriters Jason Isbell and Craig Finn.
Finn opened and played all new songs, one stood out because of his very personal story that lead into the track. It was a story about Craig's experience on September 11th 2001. The story was long, winding and almost rumbled off the tracks yet wrapped up positively and sweetly before the band went into "Newmyer's Roof".

He has now released the song and you can hear it below and see his press release to accompany it, which is close to his pre-song story:

I moved to NYC on September 15, 2000.

Just less than a year later came the terrible events of September 11, 2001. I was working at an office in Union Square and my friend and boss Chris Newmyer suggested we come to his apartment on 2nd Avenue in the East Village. We could see the towers from the roof he said.

We went up there and saw the towers burn and then collapse. At some point he suggested we get some beer. I didn't know what to feel that day, most of us had no emotion to access. So we got some beer, and drank them while watching the World Trade Center go down. It sounds detached now, but at the time it made sense on a day when nothing else made sense. I spent some years after that in darkness.

There was a girl in the 33rd floor of one of the towers that was a receptionist at an investment bank. She went to work that day and when the plane hit they asked her to stay where she was. They said it was safest. She decided against that and walked out of the towers and, like the rest of us, did her best to get on with her life.

Some years later I went to a birthday party. I talked to this girl. We talked all night. We fell in love and are still together. I came out of the darkness. I'm glad she didn't do what they told her to do.

"Newmyer's Roof" isn't about this exactly. It's a song about believing that something better is coming. It's a song about light after darkness. It's about Faith in the Future.
We here at RtBE are huge fans of Finn, The Hold Steady and everything he touches. He is the songwriter we closest identify with on the scene and this song works with a great chorus and excellent electric guitar work to close.

We are highly anticipating Faith In The Future this Fall and can't wait to give it a listen.  

Monday, August 10, 2015

Dylan Cover #196 Michael Patrick Kelly "Jokerman" Live

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is live a cover by Michael Patrick Kelly playing "Jokerman"
Thoughts on Original:
From the first time we tackled a cover of this tune:
The kick-start to his "back to rock and roll" album Infidels, "Jokerman" is a monster. A torrent of images, symbols, thoughts, proclamations, fears and fables; it feels like a dam was broken in Dylan's brain and all of these things just poured out. Musically it moves along but doesn't add much to the towering wordplay as the tune is dominated by the lyrics which seem almost never ending; Dylan has penned wordier tunes, but few feel as heavy as this. Flawed, but reaching for something, it is a not a great Dylan song but it is one that lets us peak into his brain a bit. For more on this tune, check out this post.
Cover:

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
Have never heard of Michael Patrick Kelly, an Irish Born singer who seems to be very popular in Germany, until now. He has a solid voice.
Thoughts on Cover:
A quick run through of a huge song and a live version that feels a bit off the cuff as Kelly reads the words (no shame there) and instructs the bands to quite for section. Nothing earth shattering but a fine rendition of a complicated song.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Full Show Friday: Neil Young Solo Acoustic 1971

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..Neil Young!
Sometimes Uncle Neil just gets right to the point. Personally this week he really said it all in our ears, hearts and minds. Normally we here at RtBE are all about Electric Neil, but this week the acoustic rang true, so why not showcase a solo set of his from 1971?

Sure we were totally disappointed in his newest album but with a songs like "Journey Through The Past" "Love In Mind" and "Don't Let It Bring You Down" who would facking care? This performance is also noticeable for how on Neil is. Just listen to him sing one of his all time classics "Old Man" with so much power. 

This is pro-shot pro-sound from the BBC for an easy summer Friday of acoustic early Neil Young. Enjoy:

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Live Review: Primus and Dinosaur Jr. 7/30/15 Pier 97 NYC

Primus and Dinosaur Jr.
Live 7/30/15
Pier 97 NY, NY
Two of RTBE's Personal Favorites played on a pier jutting out into the Hudson for an excellent night of music last Thursday. While the day was one of the nastiest in recent memory, sweltering 90+ humidity soaked heat and constant torrential downpours, the evening proved glorious. The heat broke, the rain held out and the tunes started.

The only downside to the night was the insanely early start time, 6pm for a Thursday show. We missed openers The Ghost Of A Saber Tooth Tiger completely and walked in when Dinosaur Jr. was already on stage. Walking in during "Out There" found J. Lou and Murph in mid set form blasting away. "Pieces" showcased J's vocals blowing into the Hudson while his six string provided immense buzzing goodness. "Feel The Pain" and "Freak Scene" brought in the 90's buzz bin vibe while the 80's got revisited with the bands pounding take on "Just Like Heaven".
Thankfully the group saved the best for last with a huge "Sludgefeast" that showcased not only J's amazing solos but a pummeling Barlow on bass. Ending with a jam that got sluggish in the vein of Black Sabbath, the song was a clear set highlight.
While it is true, we have been pretty down on Primus here recently at RtBE, this nights show restored our faith and was one of the best Primus concert we have witness in a long time. Walking out one by one, Ler, Herb and Les started up "Those Damn Blue-Collar Tweekers" one by one, massively pumping up the crowd.  

While Les has expanded into freakout hippyland as of late, all areas of the Primus song catalog was covered on this night. "Lee Van Cleef" and the good beat of "Last Salmon Man" highlighted the Green era work, while "Semi-Wondrous Boat Ride" was the only (thankfully) nod to Wonka on the evening.

The highlight songs were all from earlier Primus albums though, with Mr. Krinkle really digging deep via less on stand up bass, Herb's pounding on "Eleven" and Larry's spaced out flares for "Southbound Pachyderm". The band also saved something left for the encore as "Mr. Knowitall" and "Too Many Puppies" turned the concert pier into a slam fest.

Throughout the gorgeous evening Les commented many times on the night, his songs (hilariously giving credit to Bono for writing "Wynona's Big Brown Beaver") and the NYPD boat floating next to the stage. Clearly the cops were fans as they blew their whistle for approval when asked for and had I been able to tell my 14 year old self that I would be able to see Primus and Dinosaur Jr.'s original players performing on par with the best they ever had nearly 25 years later, I would be tooting the horn as well. 
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Support The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger here, Dinosaur Jr. here, Primus here and peep some video taken by others and full setlists in the Read More link.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Live Review: Warren Haynes Town Hall, NYC 7/23/15

Hey all got a new review up @glidemag which you can read Right C'here!!!
This was a great night of acoustic music in a historic damn venue. Railroad Earth and Warren Haynes entertained the thirsty crowd and sounded fantastic doing so.

We covered the record last week and this review covers the show, only odd thing is the setlist.com link which says it was the Grateful Dead's "Comes A Time". It wasn't. While I would love Warren to sing that gem, it was Neil Young's version that Warren and Railroad Earth covered acoustically on this night. Also the closer, while Garth Brooks did record it, Warren Haynes was a writer on the song (Brooks wasn't)...the more you know.

Here are some fan videos of those covers that closed out a wonderful night of tunes:


Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Album Review: Wilco- Star Wars

Wilco
Star Wars
**** out of *****
Offering up a free, unannounced until released, album from his popular band was just the sort of "bolt of joy" that main Wilco man Jeff Tweedy was hoping for and (perhaps surprisingly) Star Wars contains the most interesting music Wilco has released in a very long time.  

"EKG" begins things and lets you know the band is mixing it up this go around as the short noise instrumental gives way to "More...". Along with "Joke Explained", "More..." brings the most pop sensibility into these song structures, but musically there are still lots of variations with swirling key layers and guitar lines that color the prettier tunes. Because of this Tweedy's lyrics  are buried more then in the past, and lyrics are certainly not the focal point of this offering which could be a shock for longtime fans.

The band does a lot of sonic experimentation with noise (the album was expertly produced by Tweedy and Tom Schick) and while they have always tempered with it in the past, clearly the focus here is on weirdness. Free albums can often feel tossed off, but this one feels crafted with sounds in the way few pop bands outside of Spoon have done recently. Also helping out is the albums pace, songs are short, and there aren't many of them as these angular offerings never stick past their expiration date.

"Random Name Generator" uses a metallic production matched with the repeated title as a hook all based around fuzzy guitars, while album centerpiece "You Satellite" builds and rises thanks to some fantastic drumming before spacing out with guitars and satisfyingly dissolving into space. "Taste the Ceiling" swirls easily while "Pickled Ginger" picks up the energy but doesn't really do much with it.

The end of the album turns out to be the most interesting and successful as Tweedy alone with acoustic guitar poses the question "Where Do I Begin" before a tape/loop/freakout wraps up the track schizophrenically. The next two tracks are really one song split by title and track-listing only venturing into the glam late 70's pop world.

This medley is called "Cold Slope" and "King of You" sharing an electronic aloofness all centered around a cold/detached groove (first dominated by bass, then guitar) that captures the ear. Putting it on the same side as the warbling, open-ended love song closer "Magnetized" favorably brings to mind mid-era David Bowie, a comparison most Wilco fans would have probably never made before this album.    

While the tile and cover art are odd and hokey respectively, when combined with the music, the total package makes for an lightheartedly charming release that endearingly satisfies and one that will certainly hold up better over the years then many of the bands more "formal" releases.
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Support Wilco here, download the album for free here, peep some video below: