garage Archive

200-word Reviews: Five Vinyl Records

Few people are mas pleased as myself to witness (up close and personal) the vinyl revival. I’m not getting into the warmth-versus-digital argument; all I know is that as an old-school type who began purchasing LPs at age eight, I will always prefer the vinyl LP format. Plus, the artwork and liner notes are better

Album Review: Chocolate Watchband — This is My Voice

Exemplars of 1960s psychedelic garage rock, San Jose, California’s Chocolate Watchband nonetheless suffered greatly at the hands of the band’s label and (to a lesser extent) producer. Over the course of the group’s three albums of that era, not once did the members find themselves free to make an album that honestly reflected the band’s

No Way Out: The Curious Case of The Chocolate Watchband (Part Three)

Continued from Part Two… “I can’t think of too many bands that manage to build a reputation through as small a body of work,” says Palao. “When anybody looks at ‘60s garage, ‘60s punk – whatever you want to to call it – the Chocolate Watchband is always going to be one of the first

No Way Out: The Curious Case of The Chocolate Watchband (Part Two)

Continued from Part One… The punky ethos of Watchband songs like “Are You Gonna Be There (At the Love-in)” and “Let’s Talk About Girls” was no put-on; the band could be wild. Aguilar relates one of many tales from the era. “We played for Hollywood producers on this big ship. We emptied out the trophy

No Way Out: The Curious Case of The Chocolate Watchband (Part One)

(Note: An edited version of this feature appeared in Record Collector Magazine.) Throughout the history of popular music, certain managers, producers and promoters have been wiling to engage in a kind of sleight-of-hand to further their commercial prospects. If that meant sending a bogus version of a group out on the road; they’d do it:

A Vinyl Roundup to Round Out 2018

So much good music has found its way into my ears in 2018. As the year winds toward its close, I’d like to share words on a few of these with you. All titles noted below are on vinyl (LP or 7′ 45 RPM single). Wes Hollywood – Dynamite It was more than six and

Hundred-word Reviews, December 2018

This will almost certainly be my last roundup of new releases – capsule review style – for 2018. Lots of great music came out this year; don’t let anyone tell you differently. As always, each of these albums deserves more coverage than I’m able to give here, and each warrants a spin (at least) by

Liner Notes News

I’ve been extraordinarily busy lately. After devoting a large chunk of 2017 to the writing of my first book, Reinventing Pink Floyd: From Syd Barrett to The Dark Side of the Moon, in 2018 I’ve been focusing on writing liner note essays for albums. Here’s a summary of recent and upcoming releases with which I’ve

Album Review: The Shadows of Knight — Alive in ’65

Sundazed and its affiliated imprints have been doing yeoman work of late, providing an astounding service to the history of rock. The label has unearthed live tapes of fabled garage-rock bands (and I use that term loosely) of the 1960s, allowing modern-day listeners a glimpse of what these groups “really sounded like.” The bands’ studio

The 1960s Garage Rock Scene in Western North Carolina, Part Two

Continued from Part One… The Garage Band Aesthetic There’s an undeniable sense of immediacy to recordings made by garage bands of the 1960s; that quality is the result of the recording process: one take and out. Studio time cost money, as did the magnetic tape that captured the sounds. So when teenage bands showed up