vinyl Archive

Hundred-word Reviews: February 2021, Part 3

These five are all archival, reissue and/or compilation releases. There’s even a vinyl release here. Wolfgang Lackerschmid & Chet Baker – Quintet Sessions 1979 I was only recently introduced to the sublime collaborative genius of Lackerschmid and Baker via this release. Now, from the same era, comes this archival release. It’s even better, featuring as

Not Your Father’s Terry Gross: Post-rock Trio Gears Up for a ‘Soft Opening’

Some of the most innovative and creative recording artists — Jimi Hendrix, Miles Davis and Brian Wilson chief among them — have used the recording studio as an instrument. But in the case of Bay Area band Terry Gross, the studio can be said to have created the band. Multi-instrumentalist Phil Manley is a member

Album Review: Merry Christmas from Jackie Wilson

If you sent or received anything via the US Postal Service in the final months of 2020, you likely know that due to some serious shenanigans on the part of the DC regime that eventually rioted and then left town with its tail between its legs, mail was delayed. Sometimes extraordinarily so. I mention this

Album Review: Gretchen’s Wheel — Such Open Sky

On Such Open Sky, her latest album as Gretchen’s Wheel, Lindsay Murray takes a turn that’s both darker and more energetic than what has come before. From the opening strains of “You Should Know,” it’s clear that Gretchen’s Wheel circa late 2020 is a great leap forward. While her previous work has been highly melodic

Album Review: The Dave Brubeck Quartet — Time Outtakes

Released in 1959, The Dave Brubeck Quartet’s Time Out is a landmark album. An accomplished synthesis of West Coast and cool jazz, it’s remarkable for combining “unusual” time signatures – defined here as most anything beyond 3/4 and 4/4 – and musical accessibility. As has been documented many times before (and is vividly recounted in

For Howlin Rain’s Ethan Miller, the Truth is in the Mix

Ethan Miller is a big fan of live albums. The founder, songwriter and guitarist in Howlin Rain names The Grateful Dead’s landmark 3LP set Europe ‘72 among his favorites, along with 1969’s Live/Dead. But he’s more than willing to acknowledge that some classic “live” albums – Bob Seger’s Live Bullet and Thin Lizzy’s 1978 Live

Album Reviews: Redd Kross — Phaseshifter and Show World

Over the span of a decade-plus, Hawthorne, California band Redd Kross navigated the tricky path from punky indie band to one that sounded like the epitome of arena rock. And they managed the metamorphosis in a way that kept their bratty, pop culture perspective intact. In fact the change to a more radio-friendly sound served

Doug McKechnie’s ‘San Francisco Moog: 1968-1972’

In the late ’60s, the Moog modular synthesizer was still very much an experimental tool. While there had been some ambitious attempts to use the Moog as the centerpiece of recordings — Mort Garson’s 1967 LP The Zodiac: Cosmic Sounds was likely the first album to feature the synthesizer prominently — “serious” use of the

Album Review: The Rocky Horror Picture Show (soundtrack)

Even though today I’m (cough, cough) middle-aged, when The Rocky Horror Picture Show first came out, I was too young to appreciate it. In fact, as an 11-year-old, I was too young to have appreciated it, even if my parents had allowed me exposure to the film (and they would not have done). But its

Chocolate Samurai: More from My Conversation with Fantastic Negrito (Part Two)

Continued from Part One … Police violence and racial disparity have been in the news a whole lot more in recent times than they had been in a long time. Do you think things are actually getting worse or are people just starting to get fed up and it’s starting to get reported on more?