THE PRODIGAL SAL RETURNS FROM NEW ORLEANS:
MANY STORIES ABOUT MUSIC AND FOOD -- ASK HIM PRIVATELY SO TONY DOESN'T HAVE TO HEAR ANY OF IT!
SOME NEW RELEASES, AS ALWAYS!
SOME BILE-SPEWING, AS ALWAYS!
SPRINGTIME RECAP OF SOME OF THE YEAR'S BEST RECORDS!
But first... NEXT WEEK'S NEW RELEASES!
THE RACONTEURS: BROKEN BOY SOLDIERS. There's been plenty of hype about this band, which would normally lead to disappointment. But in this case, it's actually justified. Brendan Benson, Jack White, and those guys from the Greenhornes team up for what sounds like their homage to '60s psych-pop. A little bit of Syd Barrett-era Floyd, a dash of Arthur Lee's Love, and a soupçon of psychedelic sounds make up this hook-laden, melody-filled winner. It's just askew enough to appeal to White Stripes fans, catchy enough to appeal to Brendan Benson's fans, and it features those guys from the Greenhornes for the Greenhornes fans.
SPEAKING OF THE '60s...
Two reissues from THE ASSOCIATION, AND THEN ALONG COMES THE ASSOCIATION (their first album, from 1966) and the 1969 soundtrack to GOODBYE COLUMBUS, get remastered and reissued. The Association often get labeled as a soft-pop bunch of wusses. And they are wussy, but this is great music regardless.
TRUE FALSE IDENTITY is the first release of all new material from the producer extraordinare in 14 years, sounding a little like a Rain Dogs-era Tom Waits meets Hank Williams. This release is a welcome return from Mr. Burnett. Oh brother, where were thou? And TWENTY TWENTY is a 2 CD, 40 track retrospective, including rarities, lyrics, and previously unreleased tracks.
DINOSAUR 2-NIOR! (God help us)
The reissues of 1990's GREEN MIND and 1994's WHERE YOU BEEN take us back to a time when a band as weird as DINOSAUR JR could get on a major label and sell a decent amount of records. Also, at the same time, you could buy a used copy of Eric Clapton's "Backless" at Smash on St. Marks Place for $19.99. Those were the days.... Both of these CDs, by the way, come with rare and unreleased bonus tracks.
TIM EASTON: AMMUNITION. Singer-songwriter Tim Easton has always had a little bit of a following, but maybe with the release of his new CD, his current tour opening for Lucinda Williams, and the strength of the material on Ammunition, he will get a little more acclaim. This is a strong record of story-driven roots rock that also features Ms. Williams on vocals.
JELLYFISH: THE BEST. 20 track anthology from a band who only had two official releases. Features four live tracks and two demos previously only released on the now out of print box set (that's right, they only released two albums, but they had a box set -- now shut up). If you're not familiar with Jellyfish's brand of retro-pop, this is a fantastic place to start. Think the Beatles and the Hollies with the flamboyance of Queen in their heyday, and much worse clothing.
TWILIGHT SINGERS: POWDER BURNS. Afghan Whigs leader Greg Dulli releases a fourth record by his awesome post-Whigs band, the Twilight Singers. Dulli's always been able to rock and thrash with the best of them, but at heart, he's a soul man, and both of those qualities shine on this new release.
VARIOUS ARTISTS: RETURN TO THE DARK SIDE. Remember all those Irwin Allen films from the early '70s which featured every unemployed actor in Hollywood alongside one superstar just working for the paycheck? You know, Towering Inferno, Poseidon Adventure, Earthquake, Imitation Of Life.... Well, this tribute to Pink Floyd's Dark Side Of The Moon is sort of like those movies, except of course that it's a CD. Starring: Adrian Belew, Robby Kreiger, Colin Moulding, Tommy Shaw, Tony Levin, Rick Wakeman, Steve Howe, John Wetton, Malcolm McDowell, Robin Ford, Jeff Baxter, Tony Kaye, Dweezil Zappa, Bill Bruford, Edgar Winter, Geoff Downes, David Sancious, and E.G. Marshall as "The Senator."
THIEVERY CORPORATION: VERSIONS. This duo remixes some of their favorite artists, including Nouvelle Vague, the Doors, Herb Alpert and Sarah McLachlan. If you can find a thread running through that list, we tip our hats to you.
CHARLIE MUSSELWHITE: DELTA HARDWARE. The great blues harpist follows up his brilliant release, "Sanctuary", with a rocking companion.
YOU KNOW THE DRILL... to order any or all of these, or to order anything we didn't mention but you want, EMAIL US (SALJAY3@AOL.COM) or CALL US (212-244-3460)!
CHECK OUT OUR BLOG! www.NYCDonline.blogspot.com, where you can read about any and all things that come to the minds of Tony and Sal, provided they have nothing to do with New Orleans beyond the first three days of Sal's trip.
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SPOTLIGHT RECORD OF THE WEEK!!!
Longtime NYC music scene fixture JOHN CEPARANO, who gained a respectable following with his bands THE FOUR ONES and BEAT POSITIVE, returns with his new project, SOUNDPOOL. Their debut release, "ON HIGH", is his foray into the trance-like world of shoegazers such as Stereolab and Spiritualized, but thanks to Ceparano's love for '60s Britpop, the melodies shine amongst the droning and buzzing production. A highly recommended new release.
A LI'L DIVERSION AMIDST THE CD NEWS...
Does anyone really think that David Blaine is entertaining? Were you all just wishing that something terrible would happen? Watching a guy float around underwater for a week is even less entertaining than getting insulted in person by J.R. Taylor. And since when is that magic? In the words of Chris Rock: "David Blaine is a trickless magician. Not eating and living in a box is not magic. It's called living in the projects." You wanna impress us, Blaine? Try making some of the devastation in New Orleans disappear, ya big putz!
NYCD'S QUARTERLY REPORT: THE BEST RECORDS OF THE YEAR, SO FAR!
JAMES HUNTER: PEOPLE GONNA TALK. In the words of Rob, "Number one with a bullet, and I believe it's gonna stay that way until the end of the year." If you missed out the first time we raved about it, it's like this: if you didn't know better, you'd swear that it was a great lost soul record from the early '60s.
THE ESSEX GREEN: CANNIBAL SEA. Imagine a less twee Belle & Sebastian with hooks that recall the Monkees and the Mamas & The Papas. A great pop record.
VARIOUS ARTISTS: SING ME BACK HOME. Many New Orleans tribute CDs this year, some of which were really amazing, but this one shines above them all. Incredibly moving performances by the likes of Cyril and Ivan Neville, Irma Thomas, Dr. John and more.
RAY DAVIES: OTHER PEOPLE'S LIVES. The first proper solo record from one of the alltime great songwriters was a welcome return to form, even though it sank without a trace when it came out a few months ago.
NEIL YOUNG: LIVING WITH WAR. You've heard about it, now hear it. A rock n' roll album with a purpose and a message, from one of the great voices in the history of music.
BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN: WE SHALL OVERCOME. We've said it before, we'll say it again -- this is not just some throwaway covers record. It's totally unlike any Springsteen album you've ever heard, and it's the best time you'll have since you watched David Blaine float around underwater for a week.
And even though you've got another three weeks of waiting... ELVIS COSTELLO & ALLEN TOUSSAINT: THE RIVER IN REVERSE. As unlikely as the pairing sounds, that's how musically amazing it really is.
UNTIL NEXT WEEK, WE LEAVE YOU WITH THIS:
Which of the following band names is real?
LORD OF WORD & THE DISCIPLES OF BASS
David Blaine's intestines