vinyl Archive

Album Review: The Remains — Live 1969

The Remains were one of the coolest and most promising r&b-flavored American rock bands of the 1960s. The Boston-based group scored the supreme honor of opening for the Beatles on their final U.S. Tour. And the Remains would be immortalized by inclusion on Lenny Kaye’s incalculably influential garage rock compilation, Nuggets. What the Remains never

Reviews of Three 45-rpm Singles

“We get letters,” as the saying goes. Actually, I get packages. Lots of ’em. Nearly every day. Mostly CDs, occasionally LPs. Once in a blue moon, a cassette. And nearly as infrequently as the cassettes, 7: 45 RPM records. Singles, we used to call ’em, or EPs (the term originally meant extended-play 45s; today it’s

Album Review: Richard Lloyd — Lodestones

Richard Lloyd is known to aficionados of cutting-edge 1970s music as one of two guitarists in Television, a band that combined the immediacy of punk with the virtuosity and musical exploration of bands like the Doors. Younger (well, slightly younger) music fans might recognize him as the guitarist responsible for giving a barbed-wire sharp edge

Album Review: Bunk Johnson — Rare & Unissued Masters Volume One

Bunk Johnson was a New Orleans jazz trumpeter who exemplified the pre-war jazz style closer to Louis Armstrong than, say, Miles Davis. Though the style was well past the apex of its popularity, it remained (and remains) of significant historical interest. And so in 1943, ’44 and ’45, folklorist Bill Russell embarked on a mission

Album Review: The Lurkers — Fulham Fallout

It’s been pointed out by numerous chroniclers of rock history that British punk of the late 1970s grew in large part (though not exclusively) out of the so-called “pub rock” scene. With the benefit of hindsight it’s not difficult to hear the connections and draw a line between pub rockers Ducks Deluxe and Brinsley Schwarz

Album Review: Sun Ra — Standards

Jazz great Sun Ra (born Herman Blount) has an imposing reputation as the iconoclastic purveyor of wildly unusual and unconventional music. His influence is felt far beyond the confines of jazz, and that influence encompasses more than music: his attitude, his onstage sartorial choices and his self-mythologizing were all part of what made Sun Ra

Album Review: An Evening with Ornette Coleman, Part 2

No one would ever accuse Ornette Coleman of making “easy listening” music. One of the acclaimed and innovative jazz musician’s few forays into what could loosely –very loosely – termed pop music was his session work on Yoko Ono / Plastic Ono Band in 1970. And when your grounding in pop is Yoko, it’s safe

Album Review: The Cyrkle — ‘The Minx’ Original Soundtrack

Here’s as unlikely a pairing as you’re likely to encounter, even within the context of 1960s pop culture. The Cyrkle were an American pop group whose greatest claims to fame were twofold: one, they recorded and released a single, “Red Rubber Ball,” written by one Paul Simon. Two, they were part of the package of

Album Reviews: Two Various-Artists RSD Releases

The Other Side of Sun, Part 2 Sun Records had seen its heyday come and go by the time Shelby Singleton bought the label in the late 1960s. But purchase he did. And with that, Sun became part of an impressive catalog that included plenty of hits in a wide variety of genres. Even though

Album Reviews: Cocteau Twins’ ‘Head Over Heels’ and ‘Treasure’

Not to be confused with Thompson Twins, Cocteau Twins were a dream-pop band form Scotland. Between 1982 and 1996 the group released nine albums of original music, including a 1996 collaborative disc with sometime Brian Eno associate Harold Budd. Cocteau Twins’ sound was a distinctive, gauzy melange that often sounded as if it had been