MIKE DOUGLAS, R.I.P.
JOHN DAVIDSON, M.I.A.
THOM YORKE'S SOLO ALBUM, D.O.A.
NYCD NEWSLETTER, A.S.A.P.
and now... NEXT WEEK'S NEW RELEASES!
CHRISTINA AGUILERA - BACK TO BASICS. It's probably not terrible, but hearing her talk about what a big influence Billie Holiday was on the record, and how she "got in the mood" to sing "jazz" by putting on bright red lipstick, is enough to make Peanuts Hucko roll over in his grave. That said, the mash-up of her latest single, "Ain't No Other Man," with the instrumental track from Curtis Mayfield's "Pusherman" is pretty great. Do yourself a favor and track it down.
MMMM, THAT OLD CAR SMELL...
Next week sees the re-release of ELLIOT EASTON's CHANGE NO CHANGE, originally released in 1985, and BENJAMIN ORR's 1986 album LACE, both on the Wounded Bird label. Out of print for many years, Easton's record features 12 songs (plus 5 bonus tracks), all co-written with Jules Shear, and has more of a Byrds-like, jangly pop feel than his work with the Cars. Ben Orr's record, which actually had a hit single, "Stay The Night," didn't stray far from the cold electronics of Panorama-era Cars.
ARE YOU FEELIN' THE FUNK?
GRAND FUNK RAILROAD's umpteenth hits compilation, creatively titled GREATEST HITS, is actually worth it this time around, as it comes with a bonus DVD featuring various live performances, including a few from the now-legendary Shea Stadium show.
HEY HEY, IT'S THE EXPANDED EDITIONS!
Unjustly underappreciated by everyone except the reissue department at Rhino Records, the first two records by THE MONKEES (THE MONKEES and MORE OF THE MONKEES) now get remastered and vastly expanded. Each album now features both stereo and mono versions of the original records, many early takes and demos, and outtakes that didn't originally see the light of day -- including a few previously unreleased tracks that Rhino somehow missed the first twenty times they went through the vaults. Seriously, these are great collections, and if you're a fan of '60s pop, you can't go wrong with either of them.
ROGER POWELL - AIR POCKET. Keyboard geek best known for his stint with Todd Rundgren's Utopia follows up his mid '70s synth-fest release, Cosmic Furnace, with the much more accessible Air Pocket. Produced by Rundgren and originally released in 1980, it features the Utopia concert staple "Emergency Splashdown" and the Rundgren-penned "Windows," which not only appeared on Utopia's Oops! Wrong Planet but is also one of the only songs in history whose lyrics feature the word "careened." Thank you.
ALL RAITTY NOW!
The first release from VH-1 Classic's "Decades Rock" series, BONNIE RAITT AND FRIENDS, is a live document featuring Raitt and such friends as Alison Krauss, Norah Jones, Ben Harper, and Keb' Mo'. They play each other's songs both separately and as duets, and it all comes together nicely on both the CD and DVD. Let's hope we see an official release of the ELVIS COSTELLO episode.
FROM SUBLIME TO THE RIDICULOUS
Just when you thought the vaults were empty, here comes a 2 CD Deluxe Edition of SUBLIME's chart-topping 1996 self-titled album. In addition to the hits ("What I Got," "Santeria," and whatever that other one was), you now get 15 bonus tracks, eight of which are previously unreleased. Can the deluxe 2 CD version of School Of Fish's debut be too far off?
MARIA MULDAUR - HEART OF MINE: LOVE SONGS OF BOB DYLAN. Muldaur's career has been getting a bit of a resurgence thanks to some solid releases such as the star-studded Richland Woman Blues and her tribute to Memphis Minnie, Sweet Lovin' Old Soul. This new release again features New Orleans' own David Torkanowsky on piano, as well as Amos Garrett, Hutch Hutchinson, and Cranston Clements. It's a surprisingly good reading of Dylan songs such as "Buckets Of Rain," "Heart Of Mine," "Moonlight," "Golden Loom," and many more.
TRACE ADKINS - DANGEROUS MAN. Don't know if anyone north of the Mason-Dixon line cares, but the new album from the man who brought us "Honky Tonk Badonkadonk" is supposedly going to be huge. Available in regular and limited edition packages. We were told that in order to prepare for this release, Adkins listened to some old Tex Ritter and put on red lipstick.
NEXT WEEK'S BIG NEW HIP-HOP RELEASES!
DUBEE A.K.A. SUGAWOLF PIMP
DRU DOWN & LEE MAJORS
JT THE BIGGA FIGGA
KEAK DA SNEAK
YOU CAN PLACE YOUR ORDERS FOR ANY OR ALL OF THESE FINE NEW RELEASES BY EMAIL (HEYNYCD@aol.com) OR PHONE (212-244-3460). We're sure we didn't mention everything you might want, so if there's anything you're looking for, new or old, let us know!
Billboard magazine reports that many indie retailers have been complaining how few new releases are available during the summer months, and how we get drowned in high-profile releases from September to Christmas. Well, obviously, our shorter newsletters are a reflection of the lack of new major releases. Start saving your money now, because between Labor Day and the end of December, you'll be flooded with new music from your favorite artists. What we're trying to say is, it's not our fault there's nothing coming out. Blame the geniuses at the major labels (all two of 'em) as usual!
UNTIL NEXT WEEK, WE LEAVE YOU WITH THIS:
We know you watched Mike Douglas every day at 4 PM. It's OK to be sad. Find time this weekend to sing "The Men In My Little Girl's Life" to the barrista at your local Starbucks while waiting for your latte.
Doris Day, Gladys Knight, and Shirley Afternoon