reissue Archive

Video Roundup 2018

Covering DVDs and Blu-Rays takes more time than reviewing albums; I have to set up in my living room, with a recliner, a couple of cats and (generally) a good Scotch In order to do so. So with a general yet heartfelt apology for the delayed nature thereof, here’s my take on five titles released

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

Album Review: Semisonic — Feeling Strangely Fine (20th Aniv. Edition)

Certain music becomes an exemplar of the time in which it was made and released. If the artist involved is lucky, that music not only evokes memories of that period, but also withstands the test of time. To qualify for the latter, the music must somehow avoid at least some of the trappings of its

Blitzen Trapper’s Earley Years, Part Two

Continued from Part One… When the Black River Killer EP came out, I assumed that it consisted of the leftovers from the Furr sessions. But as the new deluxe edition of Furr makes clear, you still had a lot of unused material. What do you think that was behind that prolific nature that you had

Blitzen Trapper’s Earley Years, Part One

Songwriter, guitarist and singer Eric Earley founded an experimental group, Garmonbozia, in Portland, Oregon in 2000. The group’s material shows a band grasping for its signature style; free-form psychedelic excursions characterized its output. Eventually, hints of the band’s future style emerged; Earley’s songwriting coalesced around an alt-country, folk-rock style. By late 2003 the group had

Hundred-word Reviews, November 2018 Part 1

More hundred-word reviews. If you’ve wandered in here before, you know the drill: they’re all worthwhile and deserve deeper coverage. These ten are all archival, reissue or compilation releases. Oakland Elementary School Arkestra – The Saga of Padani Let’s begin by acknowledging that this disc isn’t for all tastes. Imagine the Residents meeting Sun Ra,

Album Review: Dave Brubeck — Time In

The opening solo piano strains of “Last Waltz,” the opening track on Dave Brubeck’s 1966 LP Time In are lovely enough. But they suggest that the album is going to be a somewhat staid, fussy and classically-leaning collection of songs. Certainly, there’s nothing wrong with that; Brubeck has always been a master of many styles.

Notable Vinyl Releases, Part Three

These quick reviews cover an assorted lot: two compilations, a reissue and a 45rpm single all in needle-hits-groove physical format. Warren Zevon – My Ride’s Here If you only know a few things about Zevon, it’s that he did “Werewolves of London,” that he had a celebrated sardonic sense of humor (imagine a rock-oriented Randy

Notable Vinyl Releases, Part One

These three are reissues. Hank Jones – Arigato Jones’ recording career as a jazz pianist began in 1947 and continued until age 91 with the aptly-named Last Recording in 2010. Recipient of numerous accolades (NEA Jazz Masters, ASCAP Jazz Living Legend Award, etc.), Jones was a prolific musician; he released some five dozen albums under

They Created a Monster: The Story of The Munsters’ 1964 LP

Though exploitation knows no era, the 1960s was truly the decade of the cash-in. Americans of a certain age recall that in the wake of the Beatles’ initial stateside success (beginning with a filmed show in Washington D.C. and a series of broadcasts on The Ed Sullivan Show), countless ripoff albums seemed magically to appear.