NYCD: The Blog

Friday, May 11, 2007

NEWSLETTER '07 #19!

"HI HONEY, I'M HOME!" SAL RETURNS FROM NEW ORLEANS; MENTIONS OF LOUNGE MUSIC AND DUMPLINGS CONSPICUOUSLY ABSENT FROM NEWSLETTER

PAUL McCARTNEY RELEASES NEW BAD ALBUM; RINGO GAINING GROUND IN "BEST BEATLE WHO'S NOT DEAD" COMPETITION

NEW GOOD MUSIC COMING OUT NEXT WEEK! (NONE OF WHICH IS THE NEW McCARTNEY RECORD)

and now... NEXT WEEK'S NEW RELEASES!

GENESIS - 1976-1982 (BOX SET). There is so much to love and hate about Peter Gabriel, Phil Collins, and the rest of this pretentious gang of Brits. Pros include Selling England By The Pound, The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway, Phil Collins' drumming, Peter Gabriel's reverse Mohawk, Tony Banks' impish grin, and "Paperlate." Cons: Phil Collins post-1982, Peter Gabriel's fascination with Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Mike Rutherford and his Mechanics, and Phil Collins post-1982 -- so horrendous we had to mention it twice.

As for this box set, it's a brilliant idea. Take the five best post-Gabriel records, give them new stereo mixes, 5.1 Surround Sound, and rare videos, slap 'em in a box with a bonus disc of rarities, and Bob's yer uncle. But the British version, which is identical musically, presses the discs on the best audio format around, SACD Hybrids, while here in the States, we can only listen to our 5.1 Surround mixes on DVD-Audios. That would be fine, if we could afford the British version, which is twice the price. But even if we could afford it, the DVDs wouldn't play unless you had an all-region player. Thanks, Rhino! For years we've been calling you the gold standard of reissue labels, but you blew it this time.

GUIDED BY VOICES - LIVE FROM AUSTIN, TX. A 2004 set recorded for Austin City Limits on their farewell tour. GBV records are few and far between, so you should snap this up!

IAN HUNTER - SHRUNKEN HEADS. The older this Hoople gets, the better he sounds. The followup to "Rant," one of the strongest records in Hunter's career, is just as strong. With lots of help from Jeff "Will Someone Hold My Hair Back?" Tweedy, Shrunken Heads sounds like Bob Dylan fronting "Exile"-era Stones. You can't get much better than that.

LINKIN PARK - MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT. The press release we're reading claims that this is the most anticipated release of the year. It is? Wait, what year is this again?

MOBY GRAPE - LISTEN MY FRIENDS: THE BEST OF MOBY GRAPE. All of you who purchased the long out-of-print and bad sounding Vintage collection can now trade it in to us and get a newly packaged and newly remastered 20 track anthology from the legendary San Francisco band.

TONY'S PICK OF THE WEEK (AND SAL'S ONE LOUNGE MUSIC ALLOWANCE)!

PINK MARTINI - HEY EUGENE! I really wanted to dislike this record. Just because you can speak twelve languages doesn't mean you have to record a song in each of them. And thanks to China Forbes and her multilingual skills, she has made Pink Martini a bit more gimmicky than they deserve to be. But the band is too good to be dismissed as a bunch of globehopping lounge lizards. They can take any style of music and play the crap out of it. And watch out -- the title track, which has been a live favorite for years, is a hit single waiting to happen.

VARIOUS ARTISTS - A REGGAE TRIBUTE TO THE POLICE. This is probably as lame as you think it is. It's $11.98 in 49 states, but $250 in New York City.

JOE STRUMMER - FUTURE IS UNWRITTEN. The soundtrack to the film about the late rock legend features early unreleased Clash classics, as well as tracks by Bob Dylan, the Ramones, and Elvis Presley.

RUFUS WAINWRIGHT - RELEASE THE STARS. We can't think of an artist who has had such strong feelings from both sides of the fence about his career. You either absolutely love the guy, or hate the guy. We love the guy (and when we say "we," we mean Sal). The powerful new release is exactly what you want from Wainwright -- heartbreaking, baroque pop, monster production that harkens back to the great '70s records of Queen and Elton John, intelligent and often demanding lyrics, and melodies to die for. We know those of you who hate him (and when we say "we," we mean Sal) can't hear any of this. But that's OK, because we hate Ben Folds just as much. (And when we say "we," we mean Sal and Tony.)

WILCO - SKY BLUE SKY. It's just too easy to tear this band apart. Hitting their peak with their modern masterpiece Summerteeth in 1999, the band then became alt-country's version of Radiohead. They abandoned "the song" and embraced "the sound," which is textured twaddle. BUT... they're back! Much closer to Summerteeth and their sophomore release Being There, Sky Blue Sky regains some of the magic that was lost on their last two self-indulgent releases. Comes both as a CD or a deluxe edition which also features a DVD with a 48 minute film about the recording of the record.

YOU CAN ORDER ANY OF THESE, AS WELL AS THE DOLORES O'RIORDAN SOLO RECORD (SHE'S THE VOICE BEHIND ONE OF THE MOST ANNOYING SONGS OF ALL TIME, THE CRANBERRIES' "ZOMBIE". ZAH-HAM-BEH! ZAH-HAM-BEH! ZAH-HAM-BEH!) BY EMAILING US OR CALLING (212) 244-3460!

TRADE IN YOUR OLD CDs & DVDs FOR CASH OR SHINY STORE CREDIT! EMAIL OR CALL FOR MORE DETAILS!

AS WE WERE SAYING ABOUT MACCA...

The best way to describe MEMORY ALMOST FULL, the new release from the not-so-cute-anymore former Beatle, is what we like to call "The Keith Richards Phenomenon." Remember when you saw a picture of Keith Richards in 1977? You thought to yourself, "Man, this guy looks terrible!" Then, you saw a picture of Keith in 1987, and he looked so much worse that it made the 1977 picture look like a Cary Grant headshot in comparison. Now, you see a picture of him from 2007, and that 1987 picture, where he looked like death warmed over, suddenly makes him look like Frankie Avalon. So basically, Memory Almost Full is Keith Richards, while "Vanilla Sky" is Frankie Avalon.

UNTIL NEXT WEEK, WE LEAVE YOU WITH THIS:

If anyone's wondering why nothing has been written about Sal's trip to New Orleans, his days at JazzFest, the food he ate, the people he met, and the all-around joy of being in the Crescent City, it's because he made a deal with Tony. Sal won't talk about his trip to New Orleans if Tony stops playing Nat King Cole's Cole Espa
├▒ol in the office every day.

Your friends,
Beef and Duke Ellington

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