Friday, November 17, 2017

Full Show Friday: Joni Mitchell 1980 Shadows and Light

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...Joni Mitchell!
This week we focused on some of the most talented females making popular music today. So it was time to showcase Joni Mitchell live from 1980 Shadow and Light for our Full Show Friday to end things. Playing with Pat Methany and Jaco, Joni digs into her tunes with touches of jazz as all of the players are world class. Joni came up in conversation last week and while RtBE are not the biggest fans of hers we realized we never featured her on Full Show Friday so that needed to change.

This is her Shadows and Light tour which produced the live album. Pro Shot, Pro Sound, full setlist below.


00:00 - Introduction 01:58 - In France They Kiss on Main Street 06:07 - Edith and the Kingpin 10:18 - Coyote 15:12 - Free Man in Paris 18:42 - Goodbye Pork Pie Hat 24:36 - Jaco's Solo: The High and the Mighty Third Stone from the Sun 28:41 - The Dry Cleaner from Des Moines 33:04 - Amelia 39:45 - Pat's Solo 42:46 - Hejira 50:04 - Black Crow 54:01 - Furry Sings the Blues 59:37 - Raised on Robbery 1:02:52 - Band Introduction 1:04:03 - Why Do Fools Fall in Love 1:06:26 - Shadows and Light

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Continental Closing in Summer 2018

Via our friends over at Brooklyn Vegan we found out that the Continental on 3rd ave and St. Marks will be closing next year with the building to be demolished.
You may ask what does a dive bar have to do with a music site? Well RtBE has seen many shows at Continental throughout our time in NYC. From friends bands to Joey Ramone's Birthday shows, to secret NYHC shows after they didn't officially have live music anymore. (They news-papered the windows so no one could have possible known there was a band playing right?!?!) You can view the full statement on the closing,

We ourselves never got to play there, but it would have been exactly our speed. It has been a part of our NYC heart so it is sad to see it go...what was even sadder was when St. Marks Pizza got new owners and then shut down...that used to be our favorite pizza in the whole city!

But we is some live video from Continental to remember the joint. Head down for some cheap drinks before it gets knocked down in August 2018

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Album Review: Margo Price - All American Made

Margo Price
All American Made
****and1/2 out of *****

Last year’s debut Midwest Farmers Daughter was a long time coming and it delivered the country/Americana goods, kick starting Margo Price’s career. It was on multiple 2016 Best of Lists (including ours) and proved she had the talent to write, sing and pick with the best of best from any generation.

Only one year later comes her follow-up and All American Made is even better. Price has broadened her songwriting to ingest modern day heartbreak, tough mental states and (most expressively) on political touch points; this is a masterful country/Americana record.

The opener "Don't Say It" contains a a splash of “Hard to Handle” and is the most barroom rock and roll shit-kicking Price gets, telling off a bad relationship via killer lyrics. These excellent turns of phrase are everywhere on the disk, you could swear you’ve heard them before but nope, these songs are pure Margo and the second track “Weakness” is an instant classic in the country genre.

Speaking of classics, none other than Willie Nelson shows up for a fantastic duet on “Learning to Lose” and while lyrically it may not top others here, just hearing that purely American voice delicately sing with Price is a joy. She has what amounts to a sequel to the last album’s title track with “Heart of America”, the complications of sexism double standard on the road (and in life in general) with “Wild Woman” and expands into traveling spirituality on “Loner” painting broad strokes lyrically in front of swaying music.

Speaking of the music, there are a few stretches away from Prices bread and butter of Midwestern country. “A Little Pain” gets excellently soulful with organ work while “Do Right By Me” has a down home groove propelled by the bass, drums and soul singing backup vocals; both prove when Price branches out she and her band can succeed.

The two tracks that will be discussed the most are “Pay Gap” and the title effort as Price wades into the political arena on both. “Pay Gap” is a delightful flamenco number that has yips and yee-haws whimsically masking the amazingly STILL prevalent topic of the title and succeeds in all directions. Lyrically Price is fierce and delivers her point with gusto, directness, wisdom and conviction.

“All American Made” isn’t as successful as Price dives into presidential politics, sampling speeches, singing about Reagan selling arms to the Iranians and tying it into an aching pain she can’t quite describe. While her heart is in the right place, the overloaded samples and unclear overarching focus (driving rusty pick trucks to California? Closing with an LBJ sample?) can’t live up to her lyrical directness in “Pay Gap”.

After crafting a solid-to-great country album on Midwest Farmers Daughter no one would have blinked twice if Price played it safe, especially after struggling so long to break through. Instead the opposite happened and she put out a gem of a record that broadens her horizons while simultaneously cementing her as a singer/songwriter who needs to be heard regardless of genre (not gender) bias.
Support the artist, buy the album and peep some video below:

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Album Review: St. Vincent - MASSEDUCATION

St. Vincent
*** out of *****
St. Vincent’s 5th studio album MASSEDUCATION is a swirling mix of pop, pills, sex and personal confessions blending layers of vocals styles, gorgeous production and instrumentation. However, even with a variety of styles there still seems to be a mask over the proceedings keeping things from truly sinking into the skin.

Annie Clark has made her bones being an art rock guitar slayer, but here she moves directly to the pop and visual glam as this music is tailor made for video distribution and costume changes. While David Bowie is a clear comparison for Clark, her baroque style throughout MASSEDUCATION called to mind Lady Gaga more times than expected.

Her guitar playing takes a back seat (or on some tracks it’s thrown out of the car completely) to her production work with co-producer Jack Antonoff. Dance beats, building choruses and electro-funk breaks are everywhere from the rave up for relationships (especially the fleeting ones) on “Sugarboy” to the sexed up role reversal of “Savior” to the silly-before symphonic “Pills”. With “Pills” Clark mixes up the script from direct 2017 mindless radio pop to an arty flair an ending, a trick she uses a few times throughout.

“Los Ageless” is the best of the swaggering dance tunes as it pushes the music into an industrial flavored pop direction with huge bass hits Trent Reznor would enjoy before ending the tune with a swirling mellow refrain of “Try to write you a love song but it comes out a lament” (another phrase/sound Reznor probably enjoys). While the album bumps plenty, it is the slower piano based tracks that really hit home the hardest, leading to the feeling that the pomp around the upbeat jams is more of a smoke screen for the notoriously private singer.

The mystical cool end of “Los Ageless” dovetails expertly into the achingly personal sounding, minimalist track “Happy Birthday, Johnny”. The detail and emotion of the lyrics and vocals elevate this song for Clark a style she also uses for the back-to-what-you-know love song “New York” which turns out to be an album highlight. “Slow Disco” amps up the dramatic strings while “Smoking Section” artfully declares MASSEDUCATION is not over with Clark's final lyrics.

While “Fear The Future” contains intriguing guitar work and overloaded production sounding as if it was made to steal the show, it is those softer numbers that hint at even great depth and layers for Clark’s future. While this disk is sure to have droves of devotees with its dance-pop friendly sheen it also shows Clark can deliver even more in the future.
Support the artist, buy the album and peep some video below:

Monday, November 13, 2017

Dylan Cover #301 Hanna & Hank "I Want You" Live

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a live cover by Hank & Hanna singing "I Want You" 

Thoughts on Original:
(From the first time we tackled a cover of this song)
A song that fits the Gemini Dylan like a glove; direct lyrical yearning chorus with verses that meander about introducing characters like roadblocks in the way of true love. It was the last tune written for the mega Blonde on Blonde and a song he and others (it was Al Kooper's favorite) admired so much he almost titled the album after it. Never a track that jumps to the top of peoples "favorites" or "best of" Dylan lists but one that really nails what the artist is all about in some of the simplest terms.

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
Hanna & Hank are an indie-folk duo from Gothenburg - Sweden. Their page has more on them as well. Thoughts on Cover:
This is a fun duet cover, a fun way to do an easy folkie take on the direct song. Love the dueling lyrics and the harmonica playing.  

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Veterans Day 2017

Veterans Day is an important one in our history, read more about it here.

Since this is a music site we will pay homage in our way and especially since our friend Glen has recorded a song with his great NYHC band Billyclub Sandwich titled "Veteran's Day". You can listen to bad ass tune below following the perfect Patton quote that the group used to intro it:
No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country.

"I choose to fight for what I live for" Well said fellows. Well said.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Full Show Friday: Foo Fighters Live at Rock am Ring 2015

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...Foo Fighters!

This week we focus on one of the biggest rock bands in the world, the Foo Fighters. We here at RtBE aren't huge fans of theirs, but you can't deny their broad appeal. Here is their set from Rock am Ring 2015. Pro Shot, Pro Sound, with the setlist below. Enjoy!

Setlist: 1:20 - Everlong 6:04 - Monkey Wrench 13:50 - Learn to Fly 17:56 - Something From Nothing 22:51 - The Pretender 31:11 - Arlandria (band introduction at 39:00) 44:40 - Cold Day in the Sun 48:27 - Congregation 53:22 - Walk B-Stage: 58:28 - My Hero (Dave solo, acoustic) 1:06:32 - Times Like These (Half Dave solo & half with the band on B-Stage) 1:12:25 - Stay With Me (The Faces cover) (with Dave Catching) 1:22:26 - Let There Be Rock (AC/DC cover) 1:28:18 - Under Pressure (Queen & David Bowie cover) Main-Stage: 1:34:28 - All My Life 1:40:08 - These Days 1:47:35 - Outside 1:54:45 - Big Me (Slow Version) 1:59:55 - Breakout 2:09:26 - Best of You

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Renaming The Williamsburg Bridge for Sonny Rollins

We were in NOLA when Allen Toussaint passed away and the movement started to rename Lee Circle for him. We are 100% behind that movement and are now 100% behind renaming the Williamsburg Bridge for a jazz titan who famously use to practice out on the expanse, blowing into the wind.
 "I could have probably spent the rest of my life just going up on the bridge. I realized, no, I have to get back into the real world."

There is a now legislation starting to move through NYC government to rename the span for Sonny Rollins and while it make some time to move ahead, it feels like the right people are pushing the effort and politicians are clearly open to the change.

You can find out more about it here and here but RtBE is clearly on the side of music when it comes to this one. In order to sway anyone who might be reading, just peep some of his video below:

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Album Review: Jackie Venson - Transcends

Jackie Venson
Transcends EP
*** out of *****

The Austin based singer/songwriter/guitarist Jackie Venson has recently released her newest EP Transcends. It is engaging mix of pop/rock/soul all around her excellent guitar work and easy rolling vocals.

Opening with the grooving "Flying" the EP starts strong via the Prince inspired number that showcases all of the artists numerable talents. "Mysterious" is Venson's most pop influenced numbers, using loops and digital beats, focusing directly on her breathy vocals while "Fast" struts with rocky confidence and a funky bass line but suffers from cliched lyrics about materialism. 

Venson's funky strutting keeps moving with the positive "Fight" which quotes Bob Marley and leans on dance beats behind melodic strums and some gorgeous ringing guitar notes. Things then come to a close (much to quickly) with the rocking title track which contains Jackie's fiercest guitar work on the disk and proves she is a player to watch as it closes Transcends on a high note.

While Venson has released a few EP's her 2017 is proving to be her biggest year yet with Transcends and a tour with fellow Austin rocker Gary Clark Jr. The talent is clearly there and hopefully she reaches even higher heights in the 2018 (and releases a full length).
A fun release from a talented individual. Support the artist, buy the album, peep some video below:

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Weezer and Pixies to Co-Headline 2018 Summer Tour

Two huge acts from the early nineties are pairing up for a summer tour to bring out all of the thirty/forty-somethings for a night of reliving their youth. The Pixies and Weezer will pair up for a seven week North American Tour, full dates are below:

Tickets go on sale to the public starting on Friday, November 10 at 10am local time; For more information visit and Weezer fans can also sign up for their email list now for access to the band’s pre-sale that will begin on Monday, November 6 at 11am local time.

“We’re all big Weezer fans,” said Pixies’ Black Francis, “so we’re really looking forward to this summer. We have a lot of respect for Weezer, they’re not afraid to take risks with their music.”

Weezer and Pixies 2018 Tour Dates:

6/23/18 Tampa, FL @ MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre

6/26/18 New Orleans, LA @ Bold Sphere Music at Champions Square

6/27/18 Dallas, TX @ Starplex Pavilion

6/29/18 Houston, TX @ Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

6/30/18 Austin, TX @ Austin360 Amphitheater

7/6/18 Cincinnati, OH @ Riverbend Music Center

7/7/18 Tinley Park, IL @ Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre

7/8/18 Noblesville, IN @ Ruoff Home Mortgage Music Center

7/10/18 Burgettstown, PA @ KeyBank Pavilion

7/11/18 Cuyahoga Falls, OH @ Blossom Music Center

7/13/18 Clarkston, MI @ DTE Energy Music Theatre

7/14/18 Toronto, ON @ Budweiser Stage

7/15/18 Syracuse, NY @ Lakeview Amphitheatre

7/17/18 Mansfield, MA @ Xfinity Center

7/18/18 Wantagh, NY @ Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater

7/20/18 Holmdel, NJ @ PNC Bank Arts Center

7/21/18 Camden, NJ @ BB&T Pavilion

7/22/18 Bristow, VA @ Jiffy Lube Live

7/24/18 Raleigh, NC @ Coastal Credit Union Music Park at Walnut Creek

7/25/18 Charlotte, NC @ PNC Music Pavilion

7/27/18 Atlanta, GA @ Cellairis Amphitheatre at Lakewood

7/28/18 Nashville, TN @ Ascend Amphitheater

7/29/18 Rogers, AR @ Walmart AMP

7/31/18 Greenwood Village, CO @ Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre

8/1/18 West Valley City, UT @ USANA Amphitheatre

8/4/18 Auburn, WA @ White River Amphitheatre

8/7/18 Mountain View, CA @ Shoreline Amphitheatre

8/11/18 Chula Vista, CA @ Mattress Firm Amphitheatre

8/12/18 Phoenix, AZ @ AK-Chin Pavilion

Monday, November 6, 2017

Dylan Cover #300 Emmylou Harris "Every Grain of Sand"

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 Emmylou Harris of the Dylan tune "Every Grain of Sand"

Thoughts on Original:
A monster of a song and crowning achievement during his born again Christianity phase. The version RtBE always goes back to is from the Bootleg Series Vol 1-3 with backup vocals from Jennifer Warnes and the gorgeous scene it sets. It was the pinnacle of his song writing during this era and signaled the end of his Christian phase moving back to more universal themes and a throw back to William Blake style poetry. Who knows what goes on inside the Bard's mind but this seemed to help him move back into secular music some of which showed up on Shot of Love with this tune closing out the disk and that phase of his career.   

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
We have never been a huge fan of Emmylou Harris outside of her guest work with Gram Parsons, The Band and Dylan himself.

Thoughts on Cover:
This was recorded on Emmylou's 1995 album Wrecking Ball and featured Daniel Lanois as producer. Recorded in New Orleans with the excellent producer the song takes on a different feel from the original, but Harris excellently delivers with a marching beat with light airy vocals. 

Friday, November 3, 2017

Full Show Friday: Stevie Wonder 2008 London

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...Stevie Wonder!
This week we showcase the great Stevie Wonder. RtBE caught him down in New Orleans on this same tour. Our show wasn't as engaging as this one though as Wonder plays the 02 Arena in London. Pro shot, Pro sound, full setlist with timings below...

SETLIST & PERSONNEL 1 Intro / All Blues 0:00 2 As If You Read My Mind 4:50 3 Master Blaster (Jammin') 9:05 4 Did I Hear You Say You Love Me 13:11 5 All I Do 17:10 6 Knocks Me Off My Feet 21:50 7 Celebration Of Love 25:30 8 Harmony 29:50 9 [UK Medley] 32:30 London Bridge Is Falling Down Fool On The Hill I Wanna Hold Your Hand I Can't Get No Satisfaction 10 People Make The World Go 'Round 36:40 11 Higher Ground (Cut out due to copyright issues) 12 Spain 39:45 13 Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing 51:30 14 Visions 56:40 15 Living For The City 1:09:24 16 A Man Gotta Do 1:12:49 17 Part-Time Lover 1:17:20 18 Overjoyed 1:20:15 19 Lately 1:24:5 20 I'm Gonna Laugh You Right Out Of My Live (Performer – Aisha Morris) 1:28:50 21 My Cherie Amour 1:35:10 22 Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours 1:38:20 23 Sir Duke 1:41:15 24 I Wish 1:44:03 25 Isn't She Lovely 1:46:22 26 You Are The Sunshine Of My Life 1:48:20 27 I Just Called To Say I Love You (Cut out due copyright issues) 28 You Are The Only One For Me (Snippet) 1:50:40 29 Superstition (So What The Fuss)/Clock On The Wall 1:53:02 31 As 2:01:34 Filmed at the O2 Arena, London, UK on September 30th & October 1st, 2008 Personnel (thanks HAPPY WHALE) (In order as introduced): Stevie Wonder (The Boss - Voc; p; Harm; synth; Clav.) Ryan Kilgore (ts; as) Errol Cooney (g) Roman Johnson (kb) Dwight Adams (tp) Kyle Bolden (g) Munyungo Jackson (pc) Victoria Theodore (kb) Nathan Watts (b; musical director) Fausto Cuevas III (pc) Stanley Randolph (dr) Dejah Gomez (back. voc.) Aisha Morris (back. voc.) Kimberly Brewer (back. voc.) Keith John (back. voc.)

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Dan Auerbach's Easy Eye Sound Review Coming To A City Near You

Over the last ten years Dan Auerbach has gone from half of a good rock duo to top notch producer and record label owner. Now he is highlighting his label mates and taking the show on the road in early 2017.

The "Easy Eye Sound Revue Tour" kicks off February 10th in Vancouver and continues until April when it wraps up in Denver. He will travel with his recently signed label mates Robert Finley and Shannon Shaw, with special guests Shannon & the Clams.

Along with those guests Auerbach will be playing solo and featuring songs from his excellent recent release, Waiting on a Song. He is playing Brooklyn on March 27th and RtBE will be there. Tickets for most shows go onsale tomorrow, until then peep some video below to get inspired.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Album Review: The War On Drugs - A Deeper Understanding

The War On Drugs
A Deeper Understanding
**** out of *****

On The War On Drugs last release, the critically acclaimed breakthrough Lost In The Dream, lush AOR styled tunes were paired with distanced vocals singing mumbled paranoia filled phrases. On his Atlantic Records follow up, A Deeper Understanding, Adam Granduciel (the main WoD'er) has managed to improve on the bright, soaring, radio friendly sound while warming up both vocally and lyrically, constructing the best album of his bands career.

The sonic production (another result of Granduciel directly) is simply put, glorious. Songs shine out of the speakers with vibrant crisp textures as the players move through the long numbers that rarely feel weighed down by repetition. The 80’s radio touchstones remain the same for the band, but they have incorporated new depths and dimensions as Granduciel’s vocals take a larger role in the overall sonic production.

Opener “Up All Night” sets the tone with its stylized sound and digital beats behind questioning lyrics. Where in the past Bruce Hornsby and Dire Straits were the main references to WoD's sound, now Granduciel has incorporated Tom Petty and especially mid-eighties Bob Dylan (the good eighties Dylan that is) into the fold. "In Chains" has breakout energetic appeal while “Pain” uses riveting guitar sounds ranging from clean acoustic to fuzzy electric as it slowly rolls like a wave in the ocean with Granduciel floating on top via questioning lyrics as he “Wants to find what can’t be found”.

On an album chock full of picturesque songs “Strangest Thing” is a standout. Huge strums and soaring keyboard work projects a sunrise over the mountains as pianos fade in and a bubbling bass pushes things forward surrounded by Granduciel’s ambivalent lyrics; a beautiful number that rewards repeated spins.

A major advancement is Granduciel projecting vocally rather than retreating into himself. Using Dylan circa Shot of Love and Infidels as an inspiration, his vocals take on a new found honesty on the ballad driven “Knocked Down” and the digital keyboard/chime laced “Holding On”. The difference is, where Dylan during this era dove deep into his evolving spirituality (“Series of Dreams”) or his intricate weighty tales (“Jokerman”) Granduciel never gets past textured phrases describing light and dark, rivers and oceans, shadows and light, pain and happiness, etc. He isn’t truly saying much of anything lyrically but the vocal confidence and easily identifiable openness (compared to past releases) certainly is a step in the right direction.

If there is a downside to A Deeper Understanding it is the feeling of a one trick pony as Granduciel and company have been down this path before and now flush their mid-80’s AOR love to its zenith. That said, it is hard to fault the majority of songs here, even the almost twelve minute, meandering “Thinking Of A Place” contains sonic surprises.

The nineteen eighties neon revival has been everywhere the last few years, taking a slightly different approach to the decade Granduciel and company strive to get mid-eighties mass marketed rock radio back on everyone’s radar. A Deeper Understanding nails this perfectly and should propel and already successful band to even greater heights.
Friends have been telling us about this band for a while now and while we have enjoyed them in the past nothing form the WoD has stuck around long with RtBE. That has changed. This album is damn good. 
Support the artist, buy the album and peep some video below:

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Celebrating the Halloween Spirit Through Songs

A few years ago, one of the best blogs out there, WFMU's Rock and Soul Ichiban put together a great collection of Halloween inspired tunes and playlists.
They have crafted one dealing with ghosts which you can directly download. Another that tackles vampires and you can grab that one directly as well. Now there is also Weird-O-Matic streaming and a you can also drink a spooky cup o' Alligator Wine!

All of these are fantastic and as always Ichiban gives us old songs that are brand new to RtBE and all are also flat out awesome!

I mean how could we have missed The Bar-Kay's "Holy Ghost" for all of these years?

Damn that is some funky stuff. WFMU Rock and Soul Ichiban always delivers the goods, but in 2014 they got some help from their friends over at Fringe Factory who offered up a Halloween themed show themselves right here.

Here are a few songs that jumped out to us from these shows/free downloads and of course it wouldn't be Halloween without Elvira. She closes out our Halloween focus with her Third Man Records release "2 Big Pumpkins" written by the B-52's Fred Schneider:
The Pastel Six: "The Strange Ghost"

The Primates "The Creep"

The Upsetters "The Vampire"

Virgil Holmes "Ghost Train"

Elvira "2 Big Pumpkins":

Monday, October 30, 2017

Dylan Cover #299 First Aid Kit "It Ain't Me, Babe"

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 First Aid Kit of the Dylan tune "It' Ain't Me, Babe"

Thoughts on Original:
From the first time we tackled a cover of this song:
One of the best Dylan songs because it is universal, to the point, lyrical, smirking, self-centered and a perfect statement. Dylan has written lots of songs that can be covered well (as evident by this series) but "It Ain't Me, Babe" fits perhaps better then almost any other one into a huge variety of styles. That is because we have all been in the singers position one time or another...and it is a damn good song.

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
We have not heard of First Aid Kit before, but they are a Swedish sister group from Stockholm.
Thoughts on Cover:
This is incredibly powerfully sung and in the live setting on TV it is impressive. The harmonies are gorgeous but as it progresses it gets a bit over dramatic for these ears. Still great, just not our all time favorite in the series. 

Friday, October 27, 2017

Full Show Friday: Megadeth Live at Hammersmith Odeon 1992

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...Megadeth!
We are close to Halloween so how about some metal? We haven't showcased Megadeth yet during our Full Show Friday series, so it is overdue.

This is from 1992 as the band was in the middle of the Monsters of Rock Tour. This show is from London. Pro Shot, Pro Sound, setlist is below...Enjoy!

(Intro 0:00) Holy Wars... The Punishement Due 1:10 Wake Up Dead 7:55 Hangar 18 11:32 Lucretia 16:34 Sweating Bullets 20:21 In My Darkest Hour 25:09 Tornado Of Souls 31:26 (Best solo ever 34:32) Ashes In Your Mouth 36:42 Peace Sells 42:47 Anarchy In The UK 46:56 (Credits 50:22)

Thursday, October 26, 2017

New Brooklyn Venue Elsewhere to Open on Halloween

Brooklyn keeps opening more and more live venues these days and this one is going to be a place RtBE will certainly be checking out in the near future, even if it is all the way out in Bushwick...

The owners behind Glasslands will return to Brooklyn with Elsewhere opening this Halloween with a show from Battles. Glasslands was home to some great experimental rock and roll and was a vibrant artist space back in the day so we will keep an eye on the calendar to get out there very soon.

Two RtBE favorites No Age and Evolfo are already scheduled to play the venue so those may be the first shows to check out. To celebrate here are videos from Battles as well as No Age and Evolfo. 

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Album Review: Beck - Colors

**** out of *****

Beck Hansen has always marched to his own tune and recently his pristinely produced albums have felt dour and cold, but on Colors he dips into 2017 pop/rock via his own rules and warms up to the crowd making his most successful album in decades.

Beck has mentioned that he tried to bring more energy to the studio this go around and it shows. Working with Greg Kurstin (Kelly Clarkson, Adele, Sia) the two played every instrument and co-produced the effort, Kurstin injected his hit making sensibilities and for better and worse that shows throughout Colors.

The title track is blatantly in this modern day mold with an electronic beat and distant vocals as Beck finds his way to radio/streaming services/ad space friendly. He is also back to enjoying idiosyncratic wordplay which made his lyrics so engaging at the start of his career. “Square One” uses his falsetto singing expertly and “Seventh Heaven” continues the pop motif with pretty 80's inspired soundscapes and Beck-ism’s like “I want to see you/With the pharaoh's curse/The apple flower doggerel/The batteries burst”.

This diving into 2017 dance heavy pop rock fits Beck’s sensibilities well, but it can also be light and airy, disappearing after the track finishes leaving little reason to remember it. First single “Dreams” is grandiose with swirling sounds and deep beats but dissipates quickly while “Up All Night” uses minimalist rhythms and dance ready choruses that sound perfectly made for a luxury car commercial and are disgustingly infectious at the same time.

“Wow” also fits this mode, an upbeat pleasant (if vapid) affair with disco ready digital beats before Beck drops his best stanza on the disk:
Call your wife; secular times, these times
My demon's on the cell phone
To your demons, nothing's even right or wrong
It's irrelevant, elephant in the room goes boom
Standing on the lawn doin' jiu jitsu
Girl in a bikini with the Lamborghini shih tzu
Hinting at a deeper meaning Beck ends it with a vivid nonsense line, just like old times. While that may make you briefly think about Beck’s (and your own) religion/relationships, those thoughts don’t last long as the bubblegum envelopes and sweetly bursts post song. Only on “Fix Me” (the lone song credited solely to Beck) is he more direct, retreating to Morning Phase orchestration which is very out of place on this release.

There are some soaring highs here however heard clearly on two of the best offerings, the rolling piano driven “Dear Life” and the chaotic “I’m So Free”. On “Dear Life” a Beatles influence permeates with upbeat meanderings, cutting electric guitar lines and desperate lyrics. “I’m So Free” is a jumbled mess of strings, rapping, dance laden beats, and piano with garish metal breaks; none of this should work, yet it soars. This genre-in-a-blender approach has always been Beck’s strength and nailing it here (along with Feist’s backup vocals) deepens the level of engagement from listener and artist.

While the album itself feels more like a collection of singles shooting for the charts than a complete piece, it is still the most interesting Beck has sounded in years. There are always two Becks (and Beck fans for that matter) the Sea Change sourpuss and the Mellow Gold freaknick and this album modernizes his sound while leaning thankfully towards the latter.

A mostly light and happy affair, Beck is pointing directly at the mainstream with his most accessible, best and yet most disposable effort in over a decade. Even with the ever present crystalline pop sheen, Colors still retains some depth with lyrical darkness and bizarre stanzas only Beck could come up with. While a level below his career highlights Beck still proves a powerful  voice in today's ever shifting pop landscape, that alone marks this disk a success.
Support the artist, buy the album and peep some video below:

RIP Fats Domino

The world of rock and roll lost a true legend today as it is being report Fats Domino died earlier in his home state of Louisiana. He was 89.
If you want to read a full obituary check out NPR where we got that great pic above.

Some thoughts on his passing, much like when Chuck Berry died, there is little to be sad about from a distance as Fats has lived a long life and his amazing songs will never leave us. We listen to two of his albums often, Fats Domino Jukebox and his comeback Fats Is Back.

The list of hits are long, but if you grab those two albums you will never tire of his easy rolling sound that helped create rock and roll. While it is sad he is no longer with us there will be multiple tributes in the months to come (we are expecting a big one at Jazzfest this year) and hopefully a new generation will hear his wonderful voice and vibrant piano.

So raise a glass to the Fat man and enjoy his tunes today.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Album Review: Metz - Strange Peace

Strange Peace
***and 1/2 out of *****
Sometimes a producer and a band are perfectly matched (think Brian Eno and the Talking Heads) and currently there probably isn't a better matched band producer combo than Metz and Steve Albini who work together for the first time on the bands third release Strange Peace.

On Metz first two albums the Canadian noise-rock trio slammed home their style; raw riffs, clanging noise and cement mixing beats. Not much has changed here, but all of those characteristics are right in Albini's wheel house and as the saying goes if it ain't broke...

The group continues it's pummeling assault as "Cellophane" seems to open with chainsaw buzzing intensity all the time shouting out "How will I know?" aggressively over and over again while "Caterpillar" repeats headache inducing guitar runs before while. For the faint ears this can be tough to take, but for fans of the groups past records this is really more for the same good thing.

Rather than expanding their sound or switching up their style the group plows straight ahead with its eerie metal/noise leanings. "Lost In A Blank City" has horror film foreboding, the chaotic "Mr. Plague" cooks and the grooving "Drained Lake" flourishes with an almost upbeat punk rock dance-ability (If you can get down to clanging metallic strings).

The best evolution is that more melody has been inserted throughout and the album finishes strong as the screaming "Dig A Hole" works wonders during its brief run time and closer "Raw Materials" even has some (dare I say it) pretty passages, hinting at more melodic and experimental passages possibly in their future.

The group still stays arty and intriguing with numbers such as "Sink" but tracks like the angst fueled opener "Mess of Wires" is more where they roam free. The group has upped the industrial swagger but (we have mentioned this before) Nirvana  Bleach era is their largest influence. Now working with Albini adding In Utero to the resume works as well.

Metz know what they do best and keep on doing it with Strange Peace and the small progressions in style make it their most successful release so far.  
We have enjoyed both I and II and this is more successful noise rock for Metz with the two most interesting numbers closing out the album. We have given them all three and a half stars. Support the band, buy the album, stream it on bandcamp or below where you can also peep some video:


Monday, October 23, 2017

Dylan Cover #298 CrossFire "Masters of War"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a cover by CrossFire playing "Masters of War"
Thoughts on Original:
From the first time we tackled a cover of this tune:
Ranking as one of his most accusatory and cutting tracks Dylan condemns the whole "war machine" on this classic and vital song (the "hope that you die" line is so facking cold, it is brutal). Often misrepresented as an attack on war itself (Dylan always said he wasn't a pacifist) this track calls out the government for using war-as-business (the Cold War in Particular) and business-as-war models when lives are put on the line for meaningless reasons. As alive and burning now as it was in 1962 when he wrote it.

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
A duo originally from Paris, we had not heard of CrossFire before.

Thoughts on Cover:
An effecting and haunting cover as CrossFrire mixes acoustic and electric guitars with the devastating message of the song which is sung very powerfully. After recently watching Ken Burns excellent newest release, The Vietnam War, this past weekend, a "Masters of War" cover seemed apt for this Monday and this is an excellent version.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Full Show Friday: Tool Governors Ball 2017

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...Tool!
RtBE loved this bands first two releases but while the group has only soared in popularity we have fallen out of touch. A good way to get back in touch is a video put together by the bands rabid fans from their very recent Governors Ball set here in NYC.

We missed the Ball this year, after covering it in years past, so this is a nice way to spend this fall Full Show Friday. The video has various sources, but the sound is rock solid. Enjoy:

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Warren Haynes Christmas Jam Announces Lineup for 2017

Every year one of the hardest working men in rock and roll puts on a dynamite show in Asheville, NC. This year is no exception as Warren Haynes recently announced the lineup for the 29th Annual Christmas Jam on December 9th.
This should be a great night of music and guest sit in's as everyone from Trey to Taz will be on hand to play with Haynes and crew. Each year the show gets taped and released so if you can't make it to Asheville on the 9th fear not, a tapper will have your back (or ears I guess).

Until then, enjoy some of these acts live on the internet:

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Album Review: Jay-Z - 4:44

** and 1/2 out of *****

There is a reason that hip hop lives in the realm of outlandish boasts and braggadocio; everyone wants to be the best, everyone loves a good party and in 2017 everyone wants to share and no one seems to want to think too hard. Jay-Z’s newest release 4:44 is confessional, thought out and personal...yet somehow still feels distant and cold, especially for those not following his every twitter/tabloid rumor or family life.

The Reasonable Doubt hustler could have never envisioned the billionaire CEO who is rhyming on 4:44. After hearing some of the complaints on a song like “The Story of O.J.” the young J would probably comeback super hard on the MC who wants us to connect with him through statements such as:
“Wish I could take it back to the beginnin’/I coulda bought a place in DUMBO before it was even DUMBO/For like 2 million/That same building today is worth 25 million/Guess how I am feelin? Dumbo"
How is someone who is struggling to get by supposed to hear those lines? Is their empathy there, especially via the flat delivery? The track is the most societal thinking song on the album, speaking directly to black people but still gets caught in a woah-is-me void, talking about his investments in fine art as well. Granted hip hop MC’s brag for whole albums, but these are more cold statements of fact that fall flat:
“You know what’s more important than throwin’ away money at a strip club? Credit/You ever wonder why Jewish people own all the property in America/This is how they did it/Financial freedom my only hope/ Fuck livin’ rich and dying broke”
Along with the personal revelations about his mother on “Smile” (which shows off his amazingly dexterous flow) and the twitter bound title track (which will be dissected for as long as he is married and beyond or until the next scandal) Jay-Z opens up and is happy for his mother and apologetic to this wife, both who contribute vocals to the album.

Surely the therapist (who he also references) is happy that J’s art has addressed his personal life and in 2017 that may count as a huge breakthrough, but those confessions don't always make engaging art or repeated spins on the headphones no matter how cathartic it is for the artist. 

Wealth and business is at the root of this but not in making it rain ways; Prince’s family gets called for selling out in “Caught Their Eyes” but rather than feeling shocking it feels like a business seminar, CEO advice.

Jay’s rhymes never sound tired (except on the thin “Moonlight”) and his dip into reggae on “Bam” with Ziggy Marley along with the breezy half hour plus run time is all commendable. Even greater is the dynamic and rich production in an old school vibe that never feels stale or redundant. No I.D. deserves major recognition as the producer whose musical background and beats are gorgeous from the opening siren and strings on “Kill Jay Z” to the horn drenched closer “Legacy”. 

The album talks directly to black culture about money, family legacy and the next generation while also tackling Jay’s out-in-the-open personal life and while Beyonce’s vocals ring out proud on the title track as she is (literally) backing her man, Lemonade turned her rage into a career defining album while 4:44 never breaks through. We live in a world that where all personal details are explored on social media so perhaps this is the perfect way for Jay-Z to make a record in 2017, but 4:44 will never rank with the legends best efforts.
Support the artist, buy the album and peep some video below: