review Archive

Album Review: Son House — Forever on My Mind

An acclaimed Delta blues singer and guitarist, Son House earned significant praise during his lifetime. His work was chronicled on a series of 78 rpm records, on recordings made both for the U.S. Library of Congress and Fisk University, and on more than 20 albums released during his lifetime. His slide guitar work on his

Album Review: Scott McCarl — Play On

I am sure we can agree as to the wonderfulness that is The Raspberries’ catalog. “Go All the Way” is pop perfection, taking the “don’t bore us; get to the chorus” aesthetic to the extreme in its quest for rock’n’roll transcendence. And though they released only four albums in their ‘70s run, what a great

Album Review: The Mommyheads — Swiss Army Knife

The Mommyheads released their debut album Acorn in 1989. A wholebuncha albums followed; the prolific Brooklyn-based group would release four more albums before going inactive in the late ‘90s. When they returned around 2008, their reissues and new albums created a large catalog. These days the band seems to alternate between new and archival reissues,

Album Review: Tony Hazzard — Demonstration

An absolutely delightful if somewhat perplexing collection, Demonstration features thirteen song by Tony Hazzard. The Liverpool-born singer, songwriter and guitarist is best known as a composer; his songs have been recorded by Manfred Mann, the Yardbirds and other sixties British bands. One of Hazzard’s most popular tunes, “Ha! Ha! Said the Clown” was covered twice:

Album Review: Natalie Cole — Unforgettable…With Love

By the early 1990s, Natalie Cole was anything but a newcomer to the music world. Daughter of legendary Nat “King” Cole, she had long since established herself as an R&B/soul vocalist, and had racked up an impressive string of hit singles and well-received albums. Always reluctant to ride upon the coattails of her father –

Album Review: The Loud Family and Anton Barbeau – What if it Works?

When two formidable talents get together, one doesn’t know quite what to expect. Auteurs who are accustomed to having things their own way — and who have long since earned the right to do so – can’t automatically be expected to play well with others in a collaborative venture. The product of that creative alliance

Album Review: Cactus — The Birth of Cactus

Cactus was part of the early ‘70s movement of hard-and-heavy rock outfits. Their sound had elements of the approach found in acts as diverse as Blue Cheer and ZZ Top. Growing out of the similarly heavy but substantially different Vanilla Fudge, Cactus featured the rhythm section of Tim Bogert and Carmine Appice, adding a pair

Album Review: The Troggs — The Trogg Tapes

First, a few words about what this isn’t. It’s not the infamous “Troggs Tapes” studio outtake, an audio gem that initially circulated among aficionados and collectors of the strange and hilarious. That tape is a 1970 document of members of The Troggs arguing in the recording studio, and is responsible for adding the immortal phrases

Album Review: Love Tractor — Themes from Venus

It’s worth noting that Atlanta and Athens, Georgia are a mere 70 miles apart. I mention this because back in the 1980s when I lived in the suburbs of Atlanta (I was ultimately in the metro area for some 27 years) and followed the local music scene, it was a common mistake to think of

Album Review: The Bye Bye Blackbirds – August Lightning Complex

A new record from The Bye Bye Blackbirds is always welcome. Songwriter and guitarist Bradley Skaught is a songwriter who bends classic songwriting structure to his personal needs. Even though it has a title that sounds like something Robert Pollard might come up with, August Lightning Complex is another winning set of songs in a